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Catholic  Quarterly 



Bonum  est  homini  ut  eum  Veritas  vincat  volentem,  quia  malum  est  homini  ut  eum  Veritas 

vincat  invitum.     Nam  ipsa  vincat  necesse  est,  sive  negantem  sive  confitentem. 

S.  Aug.  Epist.  ccxxxviii.  ad  Pascent. 


From  January  to  October,  1889. 



COPYRIGHT,  1889. 



Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States.    Bv  Mar  Her- 

nard  O'Reilly,  D.D., f  l 

M.  Claudio  Jannet  on  social  degeneracy  in  this  country,  1 ;  What  M  Druraont 
thinks  of  the  same  question  in  France,  2;  Ancient  land-holding  in  Ireland  3- 
Many  small  land-owners  in  France  before  the  Revolution,  4 ;  More  large  pro^ 
prietors  now  than  then,  5 ;  The  working  people  have  gained  nothing  by  the  Rev- 
olution, 6  ;  The  Church  the  only  friend  of  the  workingman  in  France  7-  Catholic 
advocates  of  the  rights  of  labor,  8  ;  The  evil  influence  of  monopolists  in  France  9- 
Misdeeds  of  members  of  the  Government,  10 ;  Bringing  financial  ruin  on  their 
country,  11 ;  Need  of  united  action  among  all  friends  of  religion,  12;  Present  need 
of  applying  mediseval  social  principles,  13;  An  admirable  plan  in  practical  appli- 
cation at  Anzin,  14;  Carrying  out  F.  le  Play's  principles,  15;  M.  Jannet's  latest 
observations  on  the  United  states,  17 ;  Recent  changes  in  our  agricultural  condi- 
tion, 18 ;  Causes  of  these  changes,  19 ;  The  money  power  as  a  peril  in  this  country, 
20 ;  The  Knights  of  Labor,  21 ;  The  kind  of  workingmen's  societies  needed  in  this 
country,  22. 

Savonarola.     By  Rev.  R.  Parsons,  D.D 23 

How  the  eloquent  Dominican  was  brought  into  prominence,  23  ;  Evil  influence 
of  the  Renaissance  in  Italy,  24;  Popularity  turned  Savonarola's  head,  25 ;  Carry- 
ing politics  into  the  pulpit,  26 ;  The  would-be  reformer  on  his  own  labors,  27  ;  Sa- 
vonarola and  Pope  Alexander  VI.,  28  ;  The  preacher's  temporary  retirement 
placed  him  at  a  great  disadvantage,  29  ;  A  disciple's  rashness  brought  both  to  ruiu. 
30 ;  An  ordeal  that  miscarried  caused  Savonarola's  fall,  32  ;  Trial  of  himself  and 
two  colleagues,  33 ;  Condemnation  and  sentence,  34 ;  Reflections  on  Savonarola's 
character,  85  ;  He  was  no  precursor  of  the  "Reformation,"  36  ;  Why  his  sermons 
were  placed  on  the  Index,  38;  Analysis  of  some  of  his  productions,  39  ;  CantO's  es- 
timate of  -  avonarola,  41 ;  What  Philip  de  Commines  and  other  contemporaries 
thought  of  him,  42. 

Scripture  Poetry.    By  Rev.  Anthony  J.  Maas,  S.J.,     ........      44 

Relation  of  the  Hebrew  poems  to  the  sacred  text,  44 ;  Technical  structure  of  He- 
brew poetry,  45  ;  Examples  of  the  different  kinds  of  parallelisms,  46  ;  The  natural 
stanzas  of  Hebrew  poetry,  48  ;  Signs  of  artistic  design,  49  ;  In  what  Hebrew  rhythm 
consists,  50 ,  Relation  of  sound-unit  to  rhythm,  51 ;  Facts  indicating  the  existence 
of  Hebrew  metre,  52  ;  Vocal  elements  not  the  true  unit  of  sound-rhythm,  53 ;  Syl- 
labic quantity  must  be  discarded,  54 ;  The  mooted  systems  allow  too  many  licenses, 
55 ;  Canons  of  Syriac  metre,  56  ;  A  few  instances  in  illustration,  57 ;  All  the  diffi- 
culties of  Hebrew  poetry  have  not  been  overcome,  59. 

LuLwoRTH   Chapel,  Bishop  Carroll,  and   Bishop  Walmesley.     By 

Rev.  Thomas  L.  Kelly, 60 

The  certificate  of  Bishop  Carroll's  consecration,  60;  How  the  Bishop-elect  was 
invited  to  Lulworth,  61 ;  Preparing  for  the  consecration  ceremonies,  62 ;  Descrip- 
tion and  history  of  Lulworth  Chapel,  63 ;  Biographical  ^etch  of  Bishop  Walmesle>% 
64  ;  His  long  episcopal  career  and  literary  and  scientific  labors,  6o ;  '  Pastorini  s 
"History  of  the  Church,"  67;  Trouble  caused  by  the  "  Protestation  'of  Charles 
Butler  and  others,  68;  The  Bishops  condemn  the  "  Protestation  Oath,  /O; 
Close  of  Bishop  Walmesley's  long  career,  71 ;  Sketches  of  the  priests  who  assisted  at 
Bishop  Carroll's  consecration,  71. 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium.    By  John  A.  Mooney, 73 

Sketch  of  political  parties  in  Belgium  73;  Reaction  caused  by  the  "^^^^ 
tyranny  of  1879, 74  ;  Undoing  the  mischief  in  1884,  7d  ;  "  Liberal  .^gi^tion  agai^nst 
the  latest  school  law,  76  ;  Breaking  off  and  restoring  relations  with  the  Holy  bee 
77 ;  Financial  reform  by  the  Catholic  min  stry,  78 ;  Giving  he  P««P\e  »  »»^^.er 
voice  in  their  own  government,  79;  Extension  of  the  franchise.  80  .Attempts  to 
reoSaSze  the  Radical  Liberal  party,  82  ;  They  produce  riot,  incendiarism,  etc., 
S7?oUt?calsfde  of  strikes  in  BeTgiu^,  84  ;  The  ^'^tholic  government's  hon^^^ 
terest  in  the  working  classes,  86  ;  The  evil  of  alcoholism  in  Bel|"im  8/ .  But  tree 
love  is  even  more  hurtful  to  society,  88;  Other  elements  ^^  «««\f  ^^^^JJi^^'f^^^ 
89  ;  Making  provision  against  external  enemies  also,  90 ;  nterest  f  B«'|'*"  J^^'^^ 
for  lovers  of  liberty,  91;  Catholics  should  not  pin  their  faith  to  any  party  or 
country,  93. 

BosTONiAN  Ignorance  of  Catholic  Doctrine.    By  John  GUma^-y  Shea,^ 

The'tre'atment  of  Catholics  m  this  country  i«  ^^l^i^^^h'otifhkJt'eJS 
doctrine  misrepresented  in  the  public  schools,  9oJJ  hat  Catho^ 
an  indulgence  to  mean,  96  ;  A  social  and  religious  transformation  g^^^      o 
Englandr97  ;  Characteristics  of  Protestanism,  98 ;  Statistics  of  Catholic  grow 


ly  Table  of  Contents. 


New  Ensland,  99 ;  How  the  change  might  look  to  the  Puritan  Fathers  100  ;  Sur- 
vival of  anti  Catholic  prejudice  in  New  England,  101 ;  Rapid  decline  of  Congrega- 
tionalism, 102. 

Progress  and  Significance  of   the  Parnell  Commission.    By  John 

Boyle  aRdlly,  LL.D., 103 

The  O'Donnell  libel  suit  and  the  famous  Parnell  letter,  103;  Mr.  Parnell's  public 
disclaimer  104  •  Origin  and  intent  of  the  I'arnell  commission,  105 ;  A  packed  and 
SSrtHbunaUOe;  Mr.  Parnell's  libel  suit,  107  ;  The  Parnell  Defence  Fund, 
108  ■  The  Commission  showing  steadfast  partisanship  against  the  Irish  party  ,109  ; 
The  Times  producing  only  the  testimony  of  vile  informers,  110;  A  ludicrous  inci- 
dent 111  •  The  Molloy  hoax,  112 ;  Two  precious  l.Hmefi'  witnesses,  113  ;  During  the 
trial'coercion  becomes  severer  in  Ireland,  114 ;  At  its  highest  point  with  the  open- 
ing of  the  year  1889, 115 ;  Mr.  Parnell  on  the  first  period  of  the  commission  pro- 
ceedings, 116. 

The  Year  1888— A  Retrospect  and  a  Prospect.  By  A.  de  G.,  .  .  117 
Fvents  influencing  the  inner  life  of  civilization,  117 ;  The  Papal  Jubilee  easily 
takes  the  lead  118 ;  The  great  lesson  it  has  taught,  119 ;  Momentous  events  of  the 
year  in  Germany,  120  ;  The  young  emperor's  visit  to  the  Pope,  121 ;  Brief  reflec- 
tions upon  Austria's  past,  122;  Events  in  Russia,  the  United  States  and  other 
countries  123;  The  modern  economic  system,  124;  What  underlies  the  labor  and 
other  questions,  125  ;  The  sham  and  the  real  social  reformers,  126  ;  The  Pope  com- 
pels praise  from  his  natural  enemies,  127  ;  The  best  preventive  of  social  revolu- 
tion, 128. 

The  Canadian  Separate  School  System.   By  1).  A.  0' Sullivan,  LL.D. 

(Laval), 129 

Advantages  of  a  denominational  over  a  State  school  system,  129  ;  Parental  and 
religious  rights  in  education,  130 ;  History  of  the  denominational  system  in 
Canada,  131 ;  Statistics  and  plan  of  separate  schools  in  western  Canada,  133  ;  How 
the  school  monies  are  divided,  134  ;  Progress  of  the  Catholic  separate  schools  for 
ten  years,  135 ;  Practically  the  system  extends  only  to  elementary  schools,  136 ; 
But  little  supervision  exercised  by  the  educational  department,  137. 

The  So-(;^alled  Problem  of  Evil— A  Protest.  By  Rev.  M.  A.  Power,  S.J.,  140 
How  to  meet  a  youth  with  difficulties,  140 ;  Solving  the  insoluble,  141 ;  Great 
minds  on  the  evil  problem,  142 ;  The  modern  poet,  the  psalmist,  and  common 
sense,  143;  The  modern  spirit  and  the  language  of  problems,  144  ;  Out  of  touch 
with  the  modern  spirit,  143  ;  Mistaking  verbal  jugglery  for  logic,  144  ;  The  modern 
mind  ill-fitted  for  philosophical  problems,  145 ;  Do  moderners  excel  in  reasoning 
powers?  146  ;  The  process  that  a  sound  critic  is  put  through,  147  ;  Importance  of 
formihg  critics  for  the  protection  of  philosophy,  148 ;  Modern  philosophers  are  a 
gullible  set,  149 ;  As  are  the  critics  so  are  the  books  to  be  criticised,  150  ;  Obscurity 
of  modern  philosophy,  151 ;  Works  that  mark  an  epoch  in  philosophical  expres- 
sion, 152. 

What  the  Languages  OwETO  the  Catholic  Church.  By  Brother  Barbas,  153 
Why  there  is  a  close  connection  between  the  Church  and  language,  153;  The 
Catholic  Church's  office  of  teacher,  154 ;  This  mission  as  voiced  by  St.  Paul,  156  ; 
The  sentiment  of  the  Church  teaching,  157  ;  The  Church  ever  engaged  in  improv- 
ing the  languages,  158  ;  What  the  English  language  owes  to  Catholic  churchmen, 
159;  Latin  as  an  element  in  English,  161;  Adapting  speech  to  practical  purpose, 
162 ;  Learning  in  Europe  during  the  Middle  Ages,  163  ;  Mediaeval  learning  the 
creation  of  the  Catholic  Church,  164;  Why  she  prescribes  limit  to  thought,  165; 
Effect  of  arts  and  sciences  on  language,  166 ;  How  the  Church  has  influenced 
precision  of  language,  167  ;  Influence  of  the  fathers  and  doctors  of  the  Church, 
168  ;  The  teaching  of  faith  on  the  greatest  of  mysteries,  169  ;  Analogy  between  the 
Divine  mind  and  the  human  mind,  170 ;  Philological  vagaries  of  some  modern 
writers,  171. 

Scientific  Chronicle.    By  Rev.  D.  T.  0' Sullivan,  S.J.,    .1 172 

The  perfected  phonograph,  172;  Mars,  174  ;  A  new  theory  of  spectrum  analysis, 
176 ;  The  theory  of  electro-magnetism,  177. 

Myths  and  Lfx^jendsof  the  "  Reformation."    By  Prof.  Charles  G.  Herber- 

mann,Ph.D., ' 193 

Living  interest  in  the  history  of  Luther's  movement,  193 ;  Luther  was  bv  no 
means  the  first  translator  of  the  Bible,  194 ;  A  vain  attempt  to  rehabilitate  Luther, 
196;  The  Bible  in  the  Church  before  Luther,  197 ;  Professor  Brewer  and  others  on 
the  pre-"  Reformation  "  clergy,  199 ;  Trumped  up  charges  against  them,  201 ;  How 
the  "  Reformation"  was  propagated,  203 ;  Character  of  Luther's  work  in  Germany, 
204;  Preaching  before  Luther's  time,  206;  The  "Reformation"  fatal  to  learning  ' 
and  education,  207 ;  Luther  and  the  Bible,  208  ;  His  relation  to  the  German  lan- 
guage, 209  ;  Not  the  father  of  congregational  singing,  210  ;  Luther  as  a  hvmn  com- 
poser, 211 ;  The  Church  has  no  reason  to  fear  impartial  criticism,  212  ;  The  claims 
that  historical  science  has  on  the  attention  of  Catholics.  214  ;  The  duty  of  lay 
Catliolics  in  the  field  of  history,  215. 

Table  of  Contents, 

^^^  YoTnT  ^^^  ^^^^^^^/^^«^^^^«M.    By  Arthur  F.  Marshall,  B.A,  '''' 

bility.  218;  Organs  of  the  Low  Clmrch  facSs   2  5^ S^^^^^^ 
organs.  220;  Religious  liberalism  among  Sfsh  P^USs    '^^^  p.w^^ 
secular  teaching  in  the  journals  to  religious  imnresSitl-"^^^^  ""^ 

of  English  journalism,  2^3  ;  Suppression  o^triuh^fn  partV  journahsm'^J^ 
journals  are  the  slaves  of  advertisers,  225-   Interest  of  cpn^infm,'.^!.-' ?^?* 
skepticism,  227;  What  may  be  expected  in  the  future  228.  Journalists  In 

A  New  Biographer  OF  Our  Lord.    By  J.  L  Rodriguez 229 

Description  of  Gen.  Lew  Wallace's  latest  book.  229  •  Interestini?  nlnn  n*f  ti,'«  J^-i' 
230  ;  It  is  a  contradiction  of  its  own  purposes.  23ilAtachment5  Chrlt  iSfau^  of 
.  His  human  nature,  232;  The  author's  ignorance  of  the  proper  amhoriUes^M- 
Legends  of  the  evangelic  times,  234;  Stories  more  edifying  and  iiXicth-eth?n 
those  chosen  by  our  author  235  ;  Absurdity  of  some  of  Ms  conclusions  236  The 
general  tradition  as.  to  St.  Joseph  237  ;  Assertions  unsupported  by  evidence  '^^ 
Schools  m  the  East  in  the  time  of  our  Lord,  239  ;  Treatment  of  the  «'  Findfnc  in 
the  Temple,"  241 ;  Pity  due  to  some  dabblers  in  Christian  teaching!  242.      ^ 

Protestantism  and  Art.    By  Peter  L.  Foy 243 

Result  of  the  inventions  and  discoveries  of  the  15th  century  ''43  •  Effects  of  the 
fall  of  Constantinople,  244  ;  Miniature  painting  the  only  exception  to  the  rule  of 
progress,  245  ;•  The  golden  age  of  Christian  art,  246;  The  Sistine  chapel  as  an 
artistic  glory,  24/  ;  Hurtfulness  of  the  "  Reformation"  to  religious  art  248  •  Rela- 
tion of  art  works  to  religious  devotion,  249 ;  Protestant  vandalism  in  houses  of 
worship,  250  ;  Specific  account  of  the  wreck  and  ruin,  251 ;  The  ruin  accorapanv- 
ing  the  religious  change  in  England,  252  ;  Why  the  England  of  to-day  is  not  an 
artistic  country,  2o4  ;  Ruin  marking  the  progress  of  the  Calvinists,  255  ;  The  "  Re- 
formation "  more  radical  and  destructive  on  the  continent,  256  ;  Its  ravages  in  the 
Netherlands,  257  ;  Motley's  picture  of  the  havoc,  258  ;  What  happened  in  Switzer- 
land, France  and  Scotland,  259;  Even  Catholic  countries  felt  the  force  of  the 
ravage.  260 ;  The  Cromwellian  desolation  in  Ireland,  261 ;  How  Rome  felt  the 
force  of  the  movement,  262  ;  The  religious  wars  and  dynastic  struggles  of  Europe, 
263;  The  iconoclasm  not  confined  to  outward  things,  264  ;  Unexampled  sterility 
of  the  '-Reformation"  on  the  side  of  art,  2p5;  Protestantism  contrasted  with 
Buddhism,  266  ;  The  various  forms  in  which  Protestantism  entered  Italy,  267. 

"BOBERT    ElSMERE"    AS    A    CONTROVERSIAL    NoVEL.       Bv    Rt.    ReV.   J.   dc 

Concilio,  B.I) '......    2fi8 

The  general  tendency  of  Mrs.  Ward's  book,  268;  Character  of  the  personages  iu- 
troduced,  269  ;  Superciliousness  of  Rationalists  in  treating  of  Christian  evidences, 
270  ;  Perhaps  the  author  intended  to  make  an  argument  ex  al)surdii>,  271 ;  A  discus- 
sion of  Christian  testimony,  '272 ;  An  untenable  philosophical  position,  273  ;  Infal- 
lible rules  for  two  necessary  conditions  of  argument, '274 ;  Credulity  of  human 
testimony,  275;  A  method  of  argument  that  claims  a  monopoly  of  knowledge,  276; 
Its  rules 'easily  open  to  question.  277;  Condition  of  the  intellectual  world  when 
Christianity  appeared.  278  ;  Miracles  and  experience,  280  ;  Eyidence  in  favor  of 
Christ's  resurrection,  281 ;  Again  the  probability  of  an  argument  ex  (ibmrdo,  282. 

The    Papacy   as    an    International   Tribunal.     By    Mgr.  Bernard 

O'Eeilly,   BD., 283 

What  it  costs  the  European  countries  to  maintain  their  armies,  283 ;  A  great 
work  on  the  peace  problem,  284;  America's  experience  of  the  folly  of  war,  285; 
Temporary  expedients  against  it,  286 ;  Truths  that  every  legislator  should  lay  to 
heart,  287';  Arbitration  as  a  remedv,  288;  its  relation  to  international  law,  289; 
Men  who  "  builded  better  than  they  knew,"  290 ;  The  present  Pope's  efforts  in 
the  direction  of  peace,  '291 ;  The  Canadian  difficulty,  292 ;  The  Carofinas  incident, 
293  ;  Need  of  a  school  of  international  law  in  Rome,  294:  Can  we  have  an  inter- 
national tribunal,  295  ;  Trespasses  against  the  law  of  nations,  '296;  Necessity  of  a 
mediator  demonstrated,  297  ;  Lessons  from  antiquity,  298;  And  from  the  Middle 
Ages,  '299;  Evil  results  of  religious  schism,  300  ;  Testimony  adduced  by  Chateau- 
briand, 301 ;  An  idea  that  may  bear  fruit  in  the  not  distant  future,  302. 

O'Connell's  Correspondence.     By  John  MacCarthy, 303 

The  pleasure  of  reading  Mr.  Fitzpatrick's  book,  303 ;  O'Connell's  idea  of  the 
people.  804  The  contrast  between  O'Connell  and  ParnelL  3«5; /f  «>;¥  f  t^  |J"«"y 
to  O'Connell's  towering  prominence,  306 ;  A  man  reveals  himself  best  in  his  letters, 
307    O'Connell's  experience  of  the  French  Revolution,  30S;  The  key-note  of  his 

,  SrepoiSlca?ee^r%09;BeginningofthemoyementforC^^^^^^^ 

310-  O'Connell  as  a  fighter,  311;  The  opposition  to  emancipation,  312.  Ihe     veto 
difficultv.Ss;  Eishol  Milner's  noble^,  314;  enmn^p^iy  out  of 
the  heart  of  the  Government,  315;  The  Clare  election,  316  Jhe  to  take 

thp  Tpsr  Oath  ;^17-  The  crowning  point  m  0  Connell  s  career,  di5,  ine  '""X  "/ 
E^^TaTidhfr'lfSing  IrliaX  rightl  319;  The  Orange  faction  in  Ireland  incorri- 
gible, 320 ;  The  cloud  that  hung  over  O'Connell's  last  days,  321. 

The  Jesuit  Estates  in  Canada.     By  John  Odmary  Shea,  LL.D.,    .    .    •    322 

Rights  guaranteed  by  the  original  cession  to  ^nf  and  322    f^^P^^.^^^^^^^^^^ 
the  Jesuits  at  that  time,  323  ;  The  Q^^?bec  Ag  and  other  measu^^^^ 
estates.  Father  Casot  and  Bishop  Kri^nd,  .T2o  ;  What  happen^^^ 
death,  326  ;  Claim  of  the  Church  to  the  old  Jesuit  College  oi  yueoec,  6., ,  v. 

yi  Table  of  Centents, 

tablishment  of  the  Society  of  Jesus.  328 ;  A  division  of  opinion  among  Catholics 
al  weKs  PrStestants,  329f  Pushing  the  case  to  a  settlement  in  Quebec  330  ;  An 
old  caliunny  revived  and  refuted,  331;  Vain  attempts  to  prevent  separation,  332; 
Removing  an  old  landmark,  333. 
Triple  Order  of  Science— Physics,  Metaphysics  and  Faith.    By  Rtv. 

W.  Poland,  S.J., 334 

The  part  that  physics  plays,  334 ;  Hypothetical  geology  335 ;  The  theory  of  evo- 
lution, 336  ;  Plat^  smiled  at  by  modern  scientists,  337  ;  The  "  Scientists  "  of  the 
hiffher  knowledge,  338;  Their  arrogance  illustrated,  339  ;  The  value  of  a  code  of 
laws  for  the  pursuit  of  truth,  340 ;  An  apt  quotation  from  Sir  J.  W.  Dawson,  341. 

Notes  of  a  Catholic  Tourist  in  Central  Europe.     By  Prof.  St.  George 

Mivart,  F.R.S., 342 

From  London  to  Basle,  342 ;  Berne  and  Interlaken,  343 ;  Unterwalden  and  its 
republican  saint,  344 ;  On  the  way  to  Andermatt,  34.) ;  The  Capuchins  at  home. 
346-  Religious  services  described,  347  ;  Einsiedeln  and  its  sights,  348;  Zurich  and 
Ccm'stance,  349  :  From  Bregenz  to  Lindau,  351 ;  Incidents  in  Bavaria's  eapiial,  oo2  ; 
Religious  life  in  Munich,  353  ;  Visiting  Salzburg,  Augsburg  and  other  places,  354 ; 
At  Ulm,  355 ;  Stuttgart  and  Cologne,  356  ;  Striking  features  of  the  Rome  of  the 
Rhine,  357. 
The  Objectivity  of  Human  Knowledge.     By  Rev.  William  A.  Fletcher,    .     358 

Errors  arising  from  ignorance  of  man's  nature,  358  ;  Objective  evidence  mani- 
festing itself  subjectively,  359  ;  The  subjective  supposes  the  objective  order,  360  ; 
Havoc  of  false  teaching  in  the  sphere  of  morality,  361 ;  Weight  of  proof  for  the 
objective  character  of  our  knowledge,  363. 
Scientific  Chronicle.     By  Eev.  D.  T.  C SuUivan,  S.J., 364 

Cobalt,  nickel,  and  their  new  associate,  364  ;  Electric  railroads,  365  ;  Aluminium 
and  the  Heroult  process,  369  ;  Bellite,  370. 

Catholicity  and  Human  Rights.  By  Rev.  Alfred  Yomig,  C.S.P.,  .  .  .  387 
Complaint  of  the  Church  against  her  opponents,  387  ;  The  question  of  God  at 
the  bottom  of  all  questions,  388  ;  Man  could  not  originate  the  idea  of  authority, 
389 ;  Man's  departure  from  the  original  revelation,  390  ;  Human  nature  and  civili- 
zation, ;S91;  The  best  human  civilization  bears  the  seeds  of  decay,  392;  Would-be 
regenerators  come  to  grief,  393  ;  Proudhon's  blasphemies,  394  ;  The  just  deserts  of 
modern  revolters,  395  ;  To  affirm  a  truth  requires  an  act  of  self-denial.  396  ;  Exi)lana- 
tion  of  the  prevailing  taste  for  the  absurd,  397 ;  The  issue  is  between  the  su- 
premacy of  the  Divine  and  the  human  word,  398;  How  the  Church  stands  to  the 
world,  399;  The  deductions  of  reason  and  the  language  of  mankind,  400  ;  Huniau 
tyranny  and  Divine  authority,  401 ;  Arrogance  bred  in  mankind  by  original  sin, 
402 ;  Influence  of  doctrine  on  the  social  condition  of  nations,  403 ;  On  what  the 
Church's  infallibility  depends,  404  ;  Idolatry  of  the  intellect  breeds  illogical  reason- 
ing, 405;  Humility  a  characteristic  of  Catholic  scholars,  406;  Why  the  princes  of 
modern  science  are  envious  of  God's  authority,  407  ;  The  strongest  proof  in  favor 
of  the  Church,  408 ;  The  Cross  has  conquered  and  will  ever  conquer,  409. 

The  Popes  of  the  Renaissance  and  their  Latest  Historians.    By 

John  A.  Mooney, 410 

The  various  historians  of  the  Popes,  410  ;  The  modern  revival  of  historical  stud- 
ies, 411;  Insularity  of  modern  English  historians,  412;  Creighton's  "History  of 
the  Papacy  ''  but  a  superficial  work,  413  ;  Lord  Acton's  estimate  of  the  work,  414 ; 
Defects  ol  the  "Introduction,"  415;  Its  two  chief  critics  compared,  416;  How 
Pastor  differs  from  both  Ranke  and  Creighton,  417;  Kanke's  self-conceit  and  pre- 
judice, 418;  In  Pastor  the  man  gives  way  to  the  historian,  419  ;  Character  of  his 
"Introduction,"  420;  The  "  Renaissance"  period  a  favorite  study  of  late,  421  ; 
The  bad  use  made  of  its  new  learning,  423  ;  The  liberty  of  the  Church  identical 
with  the  freedom  of  mankind,  424  ;  Character  of  the  Avignon  Popes,  425  ;  Begin- 
ning of  the  Great  Schism  of  the  West,  426  :  The  world  of  that  time  was  a  queer  one, 
427  :  Rome  without  the  Popes,  428;  Nicholas  V.  made  Rome  the  centre  of  Chris- 
tendom, 429  ;  Value  of  a  knowledge  of  diplomacy  to  the  historian,  430  ;  Opposition 
of  the  Popes  to  Islamism  and  to  absolutism  in  rulers,  431 ;  History  writing  has 
been  unjust  to  the  Church,  432;  Are  we  to  have  a  learned  school  of  Catholic 
American  historians  ?  433. 

Abelard.     By  Rev.  R.  Parsons,  D.D., 434 

In  what  respect  Abelard  is  best  known,  434  ;  How  he  became  the  captive  of  He- 
loise,  435  ;  Their  marriage,  436;  How  Abelard  became  a  monk  and  was  unhappy, 
437 ;  Made  Abbot  of  St.  Gildas  de  Ruys,  4;^8  ;  Sickening  sentimentality  about  Abe- 
lard and  Heloise,  439:  The  letters  attributed  to  her  not  genuine,  440 ;  Abelard's 
errors  of  doctrine,  442  ;  St.  Bernard's  interest  in  his  behalf,  443  ;  Abelard's  errors 
condemned  by  the  Pope,  444  ;  Summary  of  these  errors,  445  ;  Were  they  ascribed 
to  him  through  ignorance,  446  ;  Unjustly  stigmatized  as  a  heretic,  447. 

Prof.  Max  Muller  on  Language  and  Thought.    By  Rev.  Anthony  J. 

Maas,  S.J., * 449 

The  three  principles  of  the  theory  of  "  The  Science  of  Thought,"  449  ;  The  limi- 
tations with  which  Prof.  Miiller's  theory  is  proposed,  450  ;  Relation  of  language  to 
thought,  451;  Logical  grounds  taken  by  those  who  oppose  him,  452;  Various 
positions  he  has  taken  at  different  periods,  453 ;  Taking  liberties  with  both  lan- 
guage and  logic,  454  ;  The  new  theory  not  yet  perfected  by  its  author,  455  ;  The 
professor  indulges  in  both  gossipy  and  more  weighty  vagaries,  456  ;  Complaining 
of  Kant  being  now  neglected,  457;  Prof.  Muller  and  the  schoolmen,  4.58  ;  Tradition- 
alism, 4o9;  What  scholastic  philosophy  will  concede  to  the  professor,  461. 

Table  of  Contents, 


The  Church  of  the  Attakapas— 1750-1889.    By  3f.  ^.  a,    .  ^'l^o 

Memories. awakened  by  Pere  Jan's  death  462  •  Thp  firvit  wV^itJ  J.\  '  '  '  .  * 
Attakapas,  '4m;  Belle  Isle's  romantic  Sv  464-  How^l J  a. f  T^"  ^""""^  **^e 
verted  from  cannibalism,  466;  The  sSryo7the  Acadian ?xilP«4(-''^^^^  ''m^  ^^»; 
New  Orleans  at  that  time,  468  ;  The  Acadi^ans  in  foSana  46^  IV  vrH^^'^V,.^' 
470;  Character  of  the  Acadian  colony  in  iruiSana  47^"  lip^  Murtinsville. 
registers,  472  ;  The  first  bishop  in  Lo^4;?na'4"/3Trnd'  Je  fir^s^atThe  ••  Pos'e"S 
Attakapas,  '  474 ;  Louisiana  barren  of  vocations  to  the  priesthood  476  Fathpr 
Isabey's  mission,  477;  His  immediate  successors  478-  Sketch  nfTwio\;.  ."^ 
life,  479 ;  At  Nantes,  480 ;  Affiliated  to  the  Spists  and  then  bron^^^^  fr^'m^^''^ 
by  Arclibishop  Blanc.  481  ;  His  life  at  St.  Mart^Ssvillt^82  ;  LoneH^^^^^^ 
years,  483  ;  The  Poetry  and  r9mance  of  the  Attakap^  countryr484  QuietuKf 
bt.  Martinsville,  485  ;  Its  reminders  of  Evangeline,  486.  "  ^>^°*'  viuieiuae  of 

The  Conversion  of  the  Northmen.  By  Richard  H.  Clarke,  LL.D.,  .  487 
Rome  Iceland,  and  the  Norse  Church  in  America,  487;  Origin'and  earlv  tI 
hgion  of  the  Northmen,  489 ;  Their  principal  gods,  490  Their  hereditary  fatoUsm 
491;  How  the  Scandinavian  gods  were  worshipped,  492;  Practical  effect  of  Xe 
religion  of  the  Northmen  upon  their  character  and  conduct,  493  Difficulties  in 
the  way  of  their  conversion  to  Christianity,  496;  Relation  of  the  Roman  Pontiff" 
to  the  northern  converts  49.  ;  'Ihe  part  taken  by  the  early  Christian  kings  in  thi 
historic  progress  of  the  Church,  498  ;  St.  Ausgar,  the  Great  Apostle  of  the  Nnrth 
499  ;  Introduction  of  Christianity  into  Norway,  500  ;  Character  of  Kine  « »laf  anfi 
his  methods,  501 ;  Conversion  of  the  Icelanders,  503;  Career  and  end  of  Kins  "t 
Olaf  of  Norway,  504.  *    "• 



Professor   Fisher  on  "  Unsectarianism  "  in  the  Common  Schools. 
By  Brother  Barbas, ] 

Professor  Fisher's  criticism  of  Cardinal  Manning,  505  ;  Denominational  educa- 
tion an  old  American  principle,  506  ;  The  Cardinal's  nationality  has  nothing  to  do 
with  his  logic,  507;  Undenominationalism  is  only  a  new  religion,  508-  Professor 
Fisher's  statements  abound  in  contradictions,  509;  How  he  would  stand  in  ref- 
erence to  the  Declaration  of  Independence,  510 ;  Family  rights  take  precedence  of 
those  of  the  State,  511 ;  The  moral  right  of  the  clergy,  512:  The  principle  of  no 
taxation  without  representation,  513 ;  Desperate  bolstering  up  of  a  limping  cause 
514  ;  A  clap-trap  appeal  to  politicians,  515.  ' 

The  Anglican  Bishop  of  Lincoln.  By  Arthur  F.  Marshall,  B  A.  (Oxon.),  516 
Absurdity  of  the  recent  trial  of  the  Bishop  of  Lincoln,  516  ;  What  the  Church  of 
England  was  in  1839, 517  ;  Almost  the  only  Protestant  heresy  there  is,  518  ;  Was  the 
Anglican  Church  of  1839  the  same  as  that  of  1889/  519;  The  line  the  Bishop  of  Lin- 
coln has  taken,  520  ;  Tenableness  of  his  position,  521 ;  The  real  importance  of  the 
trial,  522;  Views  expressed  in  newspapers,  523  ;  Relation  of  the  case  to  Ritualism 
and  Low  Churchism,  525;  What  would  happen  in  case  the  Bishop  were  con- 
demned, 526 ;  His  case  may  lead  many  to  the  Catholic  Church,  527 ;  The  question 
of  a  living  Divine  authority,  528 ;  A  reductio  ad  abmrdum,  529 ;  A  trial  that  would 
have  been  impossible  fifty  years  ago,  530;  The  pith  of  the  case,  532. 

Jansenists,  Old  Catholics,  and  Their  Friends  in  America.    By  John 

Gilmary  IShea,  LL.D., 533 

Sketch  of  the  Jansenist  Church  of  Utrecht,  533;  Relation  to  it  of  religious  dis- 
turbances in  America,  534  ;  A  recent  farcical  imitation  of  it  in  the  West,  535 ;  The 
romantic  story  of  Ren6  Vilatte,  536 ;  Bishop  Brown's  lack  of  truth  and  honesty, 
537  ;  Some  curious  prayer  books,  538  ;  Their  contradictory  teaching,  539;  Difficul- 
ties of  the  Green  Bay  mission,  540 ;  Why  Vilatte's  case  is  a  peculiar  one,  511. 

The  Forthcoming  Catholic  Congress.    By  Peter  L.  Foy,  ......    542 

Origin  of  the  scheme  of  holding  the  Congress,  542 ;  The  plan  of  organization  and 
programme  for  it,  543  ;  Why  it  should  discuss  the  actual  position  of  the  Papacy, 
544  ;  Influence  of  the  voice  of  such  a  gathering,  545;  Why  the  memory  of  historic 
Italy  is  cherished  by  Catholics,  546 ;  Bad  effects  of  preserving  some  national  traits, 
547 ;  The  principle  of  nationality  acting  as  a  solvent,  548;  The  Papacy  as  a  de- 
fender of  Italy,  549 ;  The  most  interesting  work  set  for  the  Congress,  550  ;  Second- 
ary causes  of  the  Church's  growth  in  America,  551. 

Scientific  Chronicle.    By  Rev.  D.  T.  0' Sullivan,  S.J., 552 

Photography,  552  ;  Forests  and  rainfall,  556  ;  Origin  of  petroleum,  559. 

The  Struggle  for  Christian  Schools  in  France.    By  Mgr.  Bernard 
aReilly,  D.D., 

Opposing  views  of  Guizot  and  Jules  Ferry  on  education,  577;  Count  de  Mun's 
retort  to  F^rry,  578  ;  The  outlook  for  Christian  education  m  France  0^9;  Origin 
of  the  present  struggle  for  the  schools,  580 ;  Class  legislation  aganist  the  religious 
oders,^82f  Close  of  the  Jesuit  and  other  schools,  583 ;  Unavailing  protests  of  ^ 
Catholics  585  •  Efforts  to  gain  control  of  the  elementary  schools,  o8o  ,•  Conipletel.\ 
?ei?raUzingcont?ol^  schools.  587  ;  Stunning  «KV^%"  An^7er\^^^^^^ 

588 ;  M.  de  Mun's  refutation,  591 ;  Ferry  as  a  whipped  c"f'f„^.;  j^"  «y."\/;^\7'^ 
outburst  of  eloquence,  593  ;  Clinching  the  Z^'''^%'^^'''^'^t^^^^^Mr:  ?96  '•  The  crMs 
betta  put  out  of  the  way,  595;  An  intolerable  radical  dictatorship,  59b  ,  Ihe  crisis 
in  France  is  of  supreme  giavity,  597. 


viii  Table  of  Contents, 


The  First  Christian  Northmen  in  America.  By  Richard  H.  Clarice,  LL.D.,  698 
When  Greenland  was  discovered.  598;  Bull  of  Pope  Gregory  IV.,  599;  The  Bol- 
landists  on  the  document,  601 ;  Jurisdiction  of  St.  Ansgar,  602  ;  The  fir^t  vestige 
of  Christianity  in  the  western  hemisphere,  603  ;  The  tirst  Christian  in  the  New 
World,  604  ;  Leif  Ericson's  voyages,  60.3;  The  first  Catholic  church  erected  oft  this 
continent,  606;  This  followed  by  many  others,  607;  The  history  of  Gudrid,  608; 
An  incident  of  the  time  when  Christianity  was  yet  new  in  Greenland,  609 ;  A 
ghost  story,  611 :  The  later  history  of  Gudrid,  613  ;  A  passage  characteristic  of  the 
national  sentiment  of  the  Northmen,  614 ;  Some  descendants  of  the  first  native 
American  Christian,  615. 

The  Holy  See  AND  THE  Gentiles.    By  M.  T.  Allies,  ........    616 

The  present  tendency  towards  original  research,  616;  Mr.  Allies  on  the  old  and 
the  new  Rome,  617  ;  Byzantium's  jealously  of  the  ancient  capital,  618  ;  Unsatisfied 
ambition  developing  into  schism,  619  ;  Creative  power  of  the  J'opes  in  old  Rome, 
-620  ;  The  miracle  of  Rome  converting  the  barbarians,  621 ;  Capital  importance  of 
Mr.  Allies'  latest  work,  623. 

The  Uniat  Catholics  in  Kussia.     By  Bryan  J.  Clinch, 624 

Peculiar  character  of  the  Catholic  Church  in  ancient  Poland,  624  ;  The  Uniats 
then  more  numerous  than  their  Latin  brethren,  625  ;  Russian  iniquity  in  the  par- 
tition of  Poland,  626  ;  Toleration  under  the  Emperors  Paul  and  Alexander  I.,  627 ; 
The  Catholic  college  of  St.  Petersburg,  628 ;  Siemasko's  Machiavellian  perfidy, 
629 ;  How  he  went  about  his  ruinous  work,  630  ;  Official  "  union  "  of  the  Uniats 
with  the  Russian  state  Church,  631 ;  Enforcing  attendance  at  schismatic  worship, 
632  ;  Fate  of  the  priests  who  refused  to  change  their  faith,  633  ;  Heart-rending  story 
of  suffering  by  the  nuns  of  Minsk,  634;  Sister  Macrina's  own  story,  635  ;  Fidelity 
of  the  masses  of  the  Uniats,  637. 

Relation  of  the  Church  to  Human  Progress.  By  Eev. H.  A.  Brann,  D.D.,  639 
Proud  position  of  the  Catholic  Church  in  this  country,  639  ;  The  question  here 
is  of  the  human  side  of  the  Church,  640  ;  She  is  at  least  as  free  from  scandals  now 
as  at  any  period  of  her  history,  641 ;  Comparison  with  the  early  Middle  Ages,  642; 
And  with  the  11th  and  12th  centuries,  643 ;  During  the  "  Reformation  "  period, 
644 ;  Scandals  were  then  even  worse  in  Italy  than  elsewhere,  645 ;  Particular 
instances  of  depravity  in  various  countries,  646 ;  Deplorable  pictures  drawn  by 
Catholic  historians,  647 ;  The  Church  now  comparatively  free  from  the  evils  of 
former  times,  648;  Causes  of  the  improvement  in  the  external  life  of  the  Church, 
649  :  Change  in  the  mode  of  training  the  clergy,  650  ;  Good  results  of  the  destruc- 
tion of  feudal  patronage,  651 ;  We  should  be  thankful  for  the  present  condition, 

The  Relativity  of  our  Knowledge.    By  Reo.  F.  H.  Nash, 653 

Why  our  knowledge  cannot  be  merely  subjective  or  relative,  653 ;  The  theory  of 
relativity  is  a  gratuitous  assumption,  654  ;  Contradictions  of  the  theories  of  modern 
philosophers,  655  ;  Why  our  knowledge  is  altogether  objective,  656  ;  Representa- 
tion and  the  testimony  of  the  senses,  657  ;  The  soundest  theory  of  knowledge,  658  ; 
Absurdity  of  the  expression,  "  relativity  of  knowledge,"  659. 

Mont  Saint  Michel— Church,  Abbey  and  Fortress.    By  M.  A.  J.,  .    .    660 

Simplicity,  truth  and  power  are  the  higher  architectural  virtues,  660  ;  Modern 
representations  of  the  olden  monuments,  661 ;  Thoughts  awakened  by  Mont  Saint 
Michel— its  origin,  662 ;  Saint  Aubert  and  King  Childebert  II.,  663 ;  The  Archangel 
Michael  honored  among  the  Normans,  664 ;  Various  royal  visitors  to  the  Mount, 
665;  How  Mont  St.  Michel  fared  in  the  Middle  Ages,  666  ;  More  than  once  a  victim 
of  the  elements,  667  ;  Labors  and  disappointments  of  the  monks,  669;  And  it  suf- 
fered from  siege,  too,  670;  The  monastery  turned  into  a  prison,  671  ;  Changes  in 
the  architectural  details  of  the  buildings,  672  ;  "  La  Merveille,"  a  name  well  de- 
served, 673 ;  The  largest,  if  not  the  grandest,  Gothic  room  in  the  world,  675  •  A  cen- 
tury flooded  with  a  holy  light,  676  ;  The  Philistine's  of  to-day,  677 ;  The  traditions  of 
the  monks  cannot  be  wholly  lost,  678. 

Will  THE  Pope  Leave  Rome  ?  By  Arthur  F.  31arshall,  B.A.  (Oxon.),  .  .  679 
Why  the  Pope's  enemies  wish  he  would  leave  Rome,  679 ;  The  Christian  Rome 
and  the  city  ol  God,  680  ;  The  lesson  of  eighteen  centuries  of  Catholic  belief  681  • 
Divine  authority  is  a  fact,  not  a  dream,  682 ;  The  conflicts  of  the  world  with 'pon- 
tifical Rome.  683  :  The  Pope's  person  and  office  divinely  associated  with  the  Holy 
See,  684 ;  Recognition  of  the  Pope  by  modern  powers,  685  ;  The  Pope  as  an  arbi- 
trator between  the  nations,  688  ;  Rome  the  centre  of  stability,  from  the  very  nature 
of  things,  69<J. 

The  Columbus  Centenary  op  1892.  By  John  GUmary  Shea,  LL.D.,  .  .  691 
Columbus'  preparation  for  his  great  exploit,  691 ;  Relics  of  him  should  be  prom- 
inent at  the  coming  exposition,  692  ;  The  Catholic  Church  should  have  a  special 
exhibit,  693  ;  Memories  of  Catholic  pioneers  in  the  United  States,  694  ;  Some  of  the 
more  Illustrious  explorers,  695 ;  Where  personal  relics  of  Columbus  may  be  ob- 
tained, 696;  1  he  earliest  books  on  America,  697;  There  should  be  an  exhibit  of 
educational  and  eleemosynary  institutions,  698 ;  How  to  make  the  exposition  a 
success,  699  ;  I  he  duty  that  Catholics  owe  to  themselves  in  this  case,  700. 

The  Faculty  of  the  Catholic  University.  .   By  Prof.  Charles  G.  Herher- 
mann,  Ph.D 

The  material  success  of  the  University  has  been  brilliant,  701 ;  The  faculty  and 
the  chance  lor,  /02;  The  rector  and  the  vice-rector,  703 ;  The  professor  of  dog- 
matic theology,  /W ;  Of  Biblical  science,  705 ;  Of  English  literature,  706  •  The 


Table  of  Contents,  ix 

•  PAGR 

director  of  discipline,  707 ;  The  department  of  philosophy,  708 ;  The  chair  of 
canon  law,  709  ;  Of  mbral  theology,  710  ;  Lecturer  on  Church  history,  711 ;  And  on 
astronomy  and  physics,  712;  The  views  that  guided  the  trustees  in  making  their 
selections,  713  ;  European  scholars  in  our  great  schools,  714  ;  A  faculty  of  whose 
scholarship  and  Americanism  we  may  well  feel  proud,  715. 

Giordano  Bruno.    By  John  A.  Mooney, 716 

Materials  for  a  life  of  Bruno,  716 ;  His  early  life  until  his  ordination,  717 ;  Giving 
trouble  as  a  Dominican,  he  becomes  a  wanderer,  718 ;  Among  the  "Saints"  of 
Geneva,  719  ;  Something  that  looks  like  monumental  lying,  720  ;  Our  hero's  queer 
pranks  in  Paris,  721 ;  Characteristic  self-laudation,  722  ;  Personifying  presumption 
itself,  723 ;  An  affected  Copernican  and  a  worse  than  heretic,  724 ;  A  brief  term  at 
Oxford,  and  again  at  Paris,  725  ;  Giordano  at  this  time  was  anything  but  a  Chris- 
tian, 726 ;  One  whose  talent  was  to  feign,  727  ;  Excommunicated  by  the  Lutheran 
Church,  728 ;  Arrest  and  trial  at  Venice,  729  ;  Summary  of  Bruno's  strange  opinions 
on  religion  and  morals,  730  ;  A  "  philosophical  heretic  and  religious  hypocrite," 
731 ;  Transferred  to  Rome,  and  his  treatment  there,  732  ;  He  was  treated  even  as 
his  own  logic  dictated,  733  ;  In  spite  of  his  mental  abilities  and  moral  qualities, 
he  was  unknown  among  his  contemporaries,  734  ;  They  are  only  fools  who  honor 
him,  735  ;  A  second-hand  excubitator  of  worn-out  theories,  736 ;  A  monument  that 
is  a  sign  of  shame  to  the  Christian  world,  737. 

In  Memoriam— Monsignor  Corcoran.  By  Et.  Rev.  John  J.  Keane,  D.D.,  738 
Those  who  lament  Mgr.  Corcoran's  death  and  have  the  best  reason  to  do  so,  738 ; 
As  editor  of  this  Review  his  loss  is  most  heavily  felt,  739 ;  Extent  of  his  knowl- 
edge and  his  power  of  expression.  740;  Comparison  of  his  character  with  that  of 
Dr  Brownson,  741 ;  The  Holy  Scriptures  was  his  study  of  predilection.  742  ;  Excep- 
tionallv  well-equipped  for  the  work  of  a  reviewer,  743 ;  His  was  a  character  natur- 
ally incapable  of  human  respect,  744 ;  Writings  of  his  that  give  us  a  delightful  in- 
sight of  his  nature,  745  ;  The  motive  and  inspiration  of  his  life,  746 ;  His  name  and 
fame  should  be  an  inspiration  to  every  young  ecclesiastic,  747. 

Scientific  Chronicle.    By  Rev.  D  T.  0' Sullivan,  SJ., 748 

The  Weems  Electric  Railway,  748;  National  Electric  Light  Association, 749 ;  Im- 
proved system  of  cable  telegraph,  751 ;  Quartz  fibres,  752 ;  Minor  notes— Central  electric 
stations,  the  Eiffel  tower,  gnomium,  754 


American  Commonweath  (Bryce) 183 

American  Ecclesiastical  Review 192 

Ancient  Rome  (Lanciani) 379 

Apostleship  of  Prayer  (RamiSre) 575 

Aroer  ;  The  Story  of  a  Vacation 192 

Authority  (Rivington) 757 

Birth  of  the  Republic  (Goodloe) 762 

Book  of  Superiors  (McMahon) 386 

Campion:  A  Tragedy  (Longh  aye) 576 

Castle,  The,  and  the  Manor  (Winter) 576 

Catholic  Claims  (Richardson) 757 

Catholic  Family  Annual  for  1890  (Illus- 
trated)     768 

Catholic  Hierarchy  Deposed  by  Queen 

Elizabeth  (Bridgett  and  Knox) 760 

Catholic  Worship  (Gisler) 192 

Characteristics    from  Archbishop  Ulla- 

thorne's  Writings 192,  386 

Church  History  (Kurtz) 572,  768 

Constitutioues    Catholicse    Universitatis 

Americae 574 

Dependence  (Rivington) 757 

Elements  of  Ecclesiastical  Law  (Smith),  565 
Explanation  of  the  Constitution  of  the 

United  States  (Furey) 574,  767 

First  Principles  of  Knowledge  (Rickaby ) ,  375 
Frederick,  Crown  Prince  and  Emperor 

(Rodd) 377 

From  the  World  to  the  Cloister 192 

George  Washington  (Lodge) 762 

Germany's  Debt  to  Ireland  (Stang) 768 

God  Knowable  and  Known  (Ronayne)....  189 
Golden  Words  (A  Kempis  and  Hamilton),  576 
Henry  VIII.  and  the  English  Monasteries 

(Gasquet) 568 

History  of  Confession  (Guillois  and  De 

Goesbriand) 384 

Institutiones  Logicales  (Pesch) 763 

Introductio  in   Corpus  Juris    Canonici 

(Laurin) 766 

Ireland,  The  Pope  and  (McCormiek) 574 

Kant's  Critical  Philosophy  (Mahaffy  and 

Bernard) 764 

Leaves  from  St.  JohnChrysostom  (Allies), 

192,  383 
Leaves  from  the  Annals  of  the  Sisters  of 

Mercy 573 

Lectures  on  English  Literature  (Egan),  575 
Letters  to  Persons  in  Religion  (St  Francis 

de  Sales) 192,  386 

Life  and  Glories  of  St.  Joseph  (Moreno 

and  Thompson) 385 

Life  and  Writings  of  Bishop  McMullen 

(McGovern) 385 

Life  of  Blessed  Martin  de  Porres 192 

Life  of  Lady  Georgiana  Fullerton 192 

Life  of  St.  Bonaventure  (Skey) 768 

Life  of  St.  Ignatius  of  Layola  (Genelli),    19i 

Little  Book  of  Superiors  (McMahon) 386 

Liturgy  for  the  Laity  (O'Donnell) 384 

Lives  of  the  Fathers  (Farrar) 562 

Logic  (Clarke) 375 

Lourdes  (Clarke) 192 

Manual  of  Prayers 569 

Manuals  of  Catholic  Philosophy  (Stony- 
hurst  Series) 375,  574 

Memoir  of  Rev.  Francis  A.  Baker  (Hewit),  386 

Miscellanies,  Vol.  III.  (Manning) 190 

Modern  Science  in  Bible  Lands  (Dawson)  765 

Moral  Philosophy  (Rickaby) 574 

Mores  Catholici(Digby) 767 

Narrative  and  Critical  History  of  America 

(Winsor) 179,372 

New  Sunday-School  Companion 381 

Old  English  Catholic  Missions  (Payne)....  573 
Papers  of  the  American  Society  of  Church 

History 571 

Parnell  Movement  (O'Connor) 765 

Records  of  the  English  Catholics  of  1715 

(Payne) 192,  385 

Religious  State,  The  (St.  Liguori) 575 

Roman  Hymnal  (Young) 576 

Rudiments  of  Hebrew   Grammar   (Ga- 
briels)   382 

Sacred  Heart  Library  (Dewey) 675 

Sermons  at  Mass  (O'Keefe) 192 

Sermons  of  Padre  Agostino  da  Montefel- 

tro 192 

Seven   Thousand   Words  Often  Mispro- 
nounced (Phyfe)  767 

Short  Cut  to  the  True  Church  (Hill) 765 

Short  Instructions  for  Low  Masses  (Dona- 
hoe)  383 

Short  Instructive  Sketches  from  the  Lives 

of  the  Saints 382 

Six  Sermons  on  Devotion  to  the  Sacred 

Heart 192 

Socialisme  d'Etat  et  La  R^forme  Sociale 

(Jannet) 560 

St.  Basil's  Hymnal 575 

St.  Gertrude  Manual 576 

St.  Patrick,  the  Father  of  a  Sacred  Nation 

(Loughlin) 384 

Sweet  Thoughts  of  Jesus  and  Mary  (Carre),  764 
Swiss  Confederation  (Adams   and  Cun- 
ningham)   759 

Testimony  of  Justin  Martyr  (Purves) 567 

The  Holy  Mass  (St.  Liguori) 576 

The  New  Sunday-School  Companion 381 

Theologise      Dograaticie      Compendium 

(Hurter) 188 

Thomie  d,  Kempis  de  Imitatione  Christi 

(Gerlach) 766 

Thoughts  and  Counsels  for  Young  Men 

(Von  Doss) 766 

True  Spouse  of  Jesus  Christ  (St.  Liguori),  185 

Wandering  Knight,  The  (Carthenay) 381 

Ward,  William  George,  and   the  Oxford 

Movement 755 


ol.  XIV. 

JANUARY,  1889.  ^^-  S8. 



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I.  LAND    AND    LABOR    IN    FRANCE    AND    THE 

Mgr.  Bernard  O'Reilly,  D.D.,  I 


''P.,"  23 


Rev.  Anthony  J.  Maas,  S.J.,  44 



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VIII.  THE     YEAR     1888— A     RETROSPECT     AND    A 


A.  De  G.,  117 


D.  A.  O'SuUivan,  LL.D.  (Laval),  129 


Rev.  M.  A.  Walsh,  S.J. ,  138 

XI.  WHAT     THE      LANGUAGES      OWE     TO     THE 

Brother  Barbas,  153 


Rev.  D.  T.  O'Sullivan,  S.J.,  172 


Narrative  and  Critical  History  of  America— The  American  Commonwealth— The  True 
Spouse  of  Jesus  Christ — Theologiae  Dogmaticae  Compendium  in  Usum  Studiosorum  Theo- 
logise— God  Knowable  and  Known — Miscellanies— The  Life  of  St.  Ignatius  of  Loyola— 
Catholic  Worship — American  Ecclesiastical  Review. 


The  Life  of  Blessed  Martin — Sermons  at  Mass— Selections  from  the  Sermons  of  Padre 
Agostino  Da  Montefeltro— From  the  World  to  the  Cloister;  or,  My  Narrative— Lourdcs, 
its  Inhabitants,  its  Pilgrims,  and  its  Miracles— Aroer,  the  Story  of  a  Vocation— Life  of  Lady 
Georgiana  F"ullerton — Six  Sermons  on  Devotion  to  the  Sacred  Heart — Records  of  the 
English  Catholics  of  171 5— Characteristics  from  the  Writings  of  Archbishop  Ullathorne, 
with  Bibliographical  Introduction— Leaves  from  St.  John  Chrysostom— Letters  to  Persons 
in  Religion. 




VOL.  XIV.— JANUARY,  1889.-No.  63. 


La  Fin  (Tun  Monde ;  par  Edouard  Drumont. 

Les  Etats-Unis  Contemporains ;  par  Claudio  Jannet.     4th  edition. 

La  Reforme  Sociale ;  Bulletin  de  la  Socifetfe  d'Economie  Sociale  (Janu- 
ary to  December,  1888). 

IN  an  admirable  discourse  delivered  last  summer  before  the  united 
societies  of  Social  Economy  and  Les  Unions  de  la  Paix  So- 
ciale, M.  Claudio  Jannet  summed  up  all  the  conclusions  which 
he  embodies  in  the  last  edition  of  his  great  book  on  the  United 
States.  A  devoted  and  practical  Catholic,  an  enlightened  student 
and  admirer  of  our  country,  M.  Jannet  is  eminently  fitted  to  pro- 
nounce on  our  institutions  and  our  people,  on  our  present  social 
and  economical  condition,  as  well  as  on  our  future  dangers  and 
prospects,  a  judgment  that  should  commend  itself  to  American 
statesmen  and  publicists. 

"  What  is  specially  characteristic,"  he  says,  "  of  the  situation  of 
the  United  States  is  that,  while  the  political  situation  has  improved, 
the  social  question,  on  the  contrary,  has  assumed  a  degree  of  in- 
tense acuteness  greater  even,  if  that  be  possible,  than  anything 
known  in  this  old  European  world  of  ours.  The  inequality  of  con- 
ditions develops  itself,  step  by  step,  in  accordance  with  the  pro- 
gress of  American  society.  This  is  a  law  which  all  societies  obey ; 
it  is  not  in  itself  an  evil ;  it  is  a  tact  which  we  here  record." 

VOL.    XIV. —  I 

2  American   Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

We  shall  see,  in  the  course  of  this  article,  with  what  a  judicial, 
but  still  kindly,  impartiality  this  eminent  professor  of  political 
economy  in  the  Catholic  University  of  Paris  points  out  the  tvils 
and  dangers  arising  from  the  present  state  of  the  land  and  labor 
question  in  our  Republic,  as  well  as  the  remedies  and  safeguards 
which  Providence  places  within  our  reach. 

As  to  France — and  what  is  said  of  France  applies  in  a  great 
measure  to  all  continental  Europe, — we  may  take  the  information 
furnished  us  by  another  eminent  Catholic,  a  devoted  and  practical 
Catholic,  who  wields  his  pen  and  exposes  his  life  with  the  chivalric 
fearlessness  of  the  French  crusaders  of  old. 

If  M.  Jannet,  in  his  writings  and  his  private  life,  might  serve  as 
a  type  of  the  old  time  magistrature  of  the  best  epoch,  M.  Dru- 
mont  is  no  unworthy  representative  of  his  Breton  forefathers,  who 
fought  in  Palestine  under  Louis  VII.  and  Louis  IX.,  or  followed 
George  Cadoudal  and  his  heroic  Choiians.  If  his  terrible  pen 
spares  no  class,  no  living  names  in  the  cowardly,  time-serving, 
mammon-worshiping,  corrupt  and  corrupting  French  society  of 
to-day,  he  only  does  what  the  patriotic  Swiss  Catholic  did,  what 
more  than  one  of  the  old  Crusaders  had  done, — seized  a  bundle 
of  spears  aimed  at  his  fellow-soldiers  by  the  foe,  and  pressed  them 
into  his  own  devoted  breast.  He  hopes  that  others,  more  happy, 
will  rush  in  after  him  through  the  breach  thus  opened  in  the 
enemy's  ranks,  and  help  save  France  from  the  hosts  of  Antichrist. 

Let  us  see,  first,  what  the  author  of  La  Fin  d'un  Monde  has  to 
say  about  the  social  question,  about  land  and  labor  in  his  own 
country.  We  shall  then  follow  M.  Jannet  in  his  instructive 
analysis  of  our  own  social  condition. 


How  often  have  we  heard  from  the  lips  of  Catholic  scholars,  and 
read  in  works  now  classical,  the  statement  that  the  French  Revo- 
lution of  1789  conferred  at  least  one  unquestionable  benefit  on  the 
French  popular  masses, — that  of  creating  millions  of  small  landed 
proprietors,  instead  of  the  few  thousands  of  nobles  who,  before 
1 789-1793,  held  the  soil  of  France  as  their  inheritance!  This  sole 
benefit  we  have  heard  set  off,  in  Ireland,  a  few  years  ago,  as  a  com- 
pensation for  much  of  the  destruction  wrought  by  the  revolu- 
tionary convulsion  in  the  ancient  French  monarchy. 

The  fact  is  that  the  National  Convention,  in  confiscating  the 
property  of  the  French  landlord  class,  acted  on  the  same  principle 
on  which  James  I.,  Charles  I.  and  his  unscrupulous  minister,  Went- 
worth,  and  the  Long  Parliament  under  the  Commonwealth,  acted 
in  confiscating  every  foot  of  Irish  soil  and  selling  it  to  "adven- 
turers."    Cromwell  did  for  his  soldiers  what  English  kings  and 

Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States. 

parliaments  had   done  before   him,-divided  the  land  of  the  Irish 
Cathohcs  and  Protestant  loyalists  among  them,  and  drove  beyoni 

The  ancient  Irish  land-laws,  either  before  St.  Patrick  or  after 
him,  never  attributed  to  or  acknowledged  in  the  chiefs  who  bore 
the  title  of  kings  the  nght  to  hold,  singly  or  collectively,  the 
whole  soil  of  the  island  as  their  own.  This  was  the  claim  of  the 
feudal  sovereigns,  which  essentially  differed  from  the  proprietary 
right  which  obtained  in  Ireland. 

There  each  tribe  or  clan  held  the  territory,  its  patrimonial  ter- 
ntory,  as  its  own.  The  tribal  chief,  who  was  elective,  as  were  the 
higher  chieftains  or  kings,  was  allotted  a  certain  portion  of  land 
for  his  own  use.  But  of  this  he  only  had  the  use,  not  the  owner- 
ship.  He  could  no  more  barter  it  away,  or  hand  it  down  as  an 
heirloom  to  his  sons  or  kinsfolk,  than  he  could  any  other  thing 
not  his  own. 

Hence  the  outcry  raised,  when  the  first  Irish  chieftains  were  in- 
duced to  make  their  submission  to  Henry  VIII.,  and  to  accept 
from  him  the  titles  of  earls  or  barons,  together  with  the  investiture 
of  their  lands,  which  they  were  thenceforward  to  hold  as  fiefs  from 
the  sovereign.  The  people  protested  that  the  land  was  not  the 
chief's  to  transfer  to  the  king,  or  to  hold  from  him.  It  was,  they 
said,  and  truly  said,  the  property  of  the  whole  clan,  solely  and  in- 

And  this  protestation,  which  even  English  historians  note  as 
just  and  unanswerable,  was  again  and  again  renewed,  when  the 
new  earls  and  barons,  growing  weary  of  their  vassalage,  revolted, 
were  attainted,  and  saw  their  lands  escheated,  or  forfeited  to  the 
crown.  Their  people  protested  that  the  rebels  might  rightly  lose 
their  titles  or  their  lives  in  punishment  of  their  treason  to  the 
liege-lord  they  had  chosen ;  but  that  the  attainder  could  not  reach 
or  affect  the  land,  which  never  belonged  to  the  rebels,  and  never 
could  be  forfeited  by  those  who  did  not  own  it. 

We  have  made  this  statement  to  show  that  the  ancient  land-laws 
of  Ireland  essentially  differed  from  those  of  England,  from  those 
of  France  and  of  most  continental  countries,  where  the  feudal 
system  prevailed. 

But,  without  at  all  entering  into  the  right  or  wrong  of  the 
wholesale  confiscation  or  "nationalization"  of  land,  as  decreed  by 
the  French  Constituent  Assembly  and  its  successor,  the  'National 
Convention,  we  must  here  meet,  with  a  peremptory  denial,  the  asser- 
tion, so  confidently  made  and  so  universally  believed,  that  the 
French  Revolution   created  a  large  class  of  small  farmer  proprie- 

4  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

tors,  who  took  the  place  of  the  former  landed  aristocracy,  dispos- 
sessed from  1789  to  1792. 

Let  us,  on  this  most  interesting  question,  hear  what  M.  Dru- 
mont  and  the  authorities  he  quotes  have  to  say : 

"  What  is  most  astonishing,"  he  writes,  "  is  to  see  our  middle- 
class  Conservatives  {Conservateiu^s  bourgeois)  shrugging  their 
shoulders,  and  to  hear  their  indignant  outcries,  when  one  presumes 
to  discuss,  in  their  presence,  the  principle  of  property,  especially 
when  one  remembers  that  this  French  middle-class  {bourgeoisie)  are 
now  living,  in  a  great  measure,  on  the  fruits  of  the  most  monstrous, 
brutal,  and  bloody  appropriation  that  the  world  has  ever  witnessed. 
These  middle-class  men,  whom  the  very  term  of '  nationalization 
of  the  soil '  throws  into  a  violent  fit,  forget  that  such  a  *  nationali- 
zation '  has  already  taken  place  within  the  present  century.  Only, 
far  from  turning  out  to  be  profitable  to  the  entire  nation, — a  result 
which  never  could  have  been  an  excuse  for  the  horrible  conditions 
under  which  it  was  effected — this  '  nationalization  '  benefited  none 
but  the  middle  class,  a  fact  which  should  prevent  them  from  utter- 
ing such  loud  protestations. 

"  One  hundred  years  have  not  yet  passed  by  since  we  have  seen 
applied  to  the  whole  of  France  the  very  theories  which,  as  formu- 
lated by  the  Anarchists  of  our  day,  strike  the  most  indulgent  minds 
as  something  frightful.  .  .  . 

"  People  have  generally  accepted,  and  I  have  myself  believed  as 
Gospel-truth,  the  formulated  assertion,  '  the  Revolution  gave  back 
the  land  to  the  peasants.' 

"  The  assertion  is  an  absolute  falsehood,  and  socialistic  writers, 
as  well  as  official  economists,  at  present  agree  in  acknowledging 
its  inaccuracy.  *  Letrosne  informs  us,'  says  Michelet,  '  that  when 
Turgot  became  minister,  the  one-fourth  of  the  soil  belonged  to 
those  who  tilled  it.'  In  our  day,  on  the  contrary,  all  statistics  go 
to  prove  that  the  small  farmers  do  not  own  one-eighth  of  the  land 

"  Of  14,000,000  of  registered  land-properties,  61  per  cent.,  that  is 
8,600,000,  include  only  a  total  of  2,574,589  hectares  (each  hectare 
being  over  two  acres)  of  taxable  soil  in  a  grand  total  of  49,338,304 
hectares,  that  is,  only  5.19  per  cent. ;  whereas,  the  holdings  of  large 
proprietors  owning  fifty  hectares  and  above,  with  122,000  registered 
titles,  comprise  nearly  18,000,000  of  hectares,  or  more  than  35  per 
cent,  of  the  national  arable  territory." 

Toubeau,  in  his  Impbt  inetrique,  and  the  journal  La  Terre  aux 
Pay  sans  {^■di\xx\(i^,  editor,  1885),  furnish  us  with  the  following  table: 

^  See  Chirac,  La  Prochaine  Riwlution,  and  La  Revue  Socialiste  oi  February  15th, 

Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States 

Lands  not  owned  by  those  who  till  them:  woods,  forests,        **"^**- 
waste  lands,  marshes,  fallows,  grazing  lands  and  pas- 
turages, ...  r 

T  ,  .,,         ,  ,  ,         ,  '  •  •  •  •  10,000,000, 

Lands  tilled  on  the  half  profit  system 

Lands  tilled  by  tenant-farmers, 

49,000  holdings  of  more  than  100  hectares  cultivated  by 

farm-laborers,         ,         .         .  ^^^.^^ 

,    .'    .  12,000,000. 

Houses,  out-buildings,  orchards,  nurseries,  gardens,  .        .      1,000,000. 


''  Total,  45,000,000  of  hectares  to  be  subtracted  from  49,000,000  ; 
remainder  for  small  farmer-proprietors,  4,000,000  of  hectares! 

*'  The  share  of  this  latter  class  is,  therefore,  less  than  one -ninth. 

"  The  truth  is,  as  we  are  told  by  the  authors  of  The  Land  Ques- 
tion, MM.  R.  Meyer  and  G.  Ardant,  that  the  French  Revolution 
neither  created  small  proprietors  nor  destroyed  large  landed  pro- 
prietors. It  only  called  forth  from  another  social  class  men  who 
bought  up  the  old  lordships  or  who  built  up  with  their  money 
new  and  wide  domains.  To  the  territorial  nobility  succeeded  the 
land-owning  middle  class  [Bourgeoisie),  The  former  was  only  in- 
vested with  the  dominium  directum  (the  direct  ownership,  without 
the  use  of  the  soil) ;  the  latter  enjoys,  over  and  above  this,  the 
dominium  utile.  Moreover,  the  new  proprietary  class  in  France 
have  added  to  the  property  once  held  by  the  ancient  nobility  a 
very  large  pprtion  of  the  lands  and  tenements  belonging  to  the 
Church  corporations,  and,  during  the  century  last  past,  they  have 
still  further  increased  their  property  by  purchases  from  small  far- 
mers. In  the  absence-  of  statistics,  this  fact  is  made  evident  by 
personal  observation. 

'*  So,  then,  the  large-landed  proprietary  class  possess  more.* 

"  The  French  Revolution  has  benefited  some  people,  since,  ac- 
cording to  M.  Fernand  Maurice,  the  Rothschilds  now  own  200,000 
hectares  (between  400,000  and  500,000  acres)  of  the  lands  of  France, 
more  than  the  nobles  did  a  century  ago ;  and  the  title  on  which  it 

1  The  author  of  a  deeply  inteiesting  volume,  La  Reforme  agraire  et  la  misere  en 
France  ("  Land  Reform  and  Poverty  in  France  "),  M.  Fernand  Maurice,  refutes,  in 
nearly  the  same  terms,  the  legend  of  the  lands  having  been  given  to  the  peasants  by 
the  Revolution: 

"Just  as  the  land  existed  before  1789,  just  so  do  we  find  it  a  century  thereafter. 
The  petty  farmer  has  kept  hold  of  his  cottage  and  of  the  garden  attached  to  it ;  this 
is  the  sum  total  of  progress.  The  other  3,500,000  farm-laborers  have  not  even  gained 
the  privilege  to  have  a  roof  of  their  own,  no  matter  how  wretched.  For  it  must  not 
be  forgotten  that,  alongside  the  3,000,400  small  proprietors  of  holdings  of  less  than  ten 
acres  (5  hectares),  who  are  mostly  obliged  to  work  for  others,  agriculture  employs  also 
3,500,000  laborers,  real  proletarians  these,  who  have  only  their  stout  arms  to  wm 
bread  for  their  families.  .  1  •     .  j 

"  This  explains  why  the  farm-laborers  emigrate,  why  the  soil  remains  uncultivated, 
and  why,  from  1831  to  1881,  6,000,000  of  persons  have  forsaken  the  country  for  the 

6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

is  wrongfully  held  is  more  absolute  and  more  simple  than  it  had 
ever  been  since  the  Roman  period."^ 

Passing  to  the  use  the  bourgeoisie,  or  new  landlord  class  in 
France,  made  of  their  power,  M.  Drumont  says  that  they  began  by 
persuading  the  people,  the  laboring  classes  in  town  and  country, 
that  they,  the  people,  it  was  who  had  done  all  that  was  wrong  in 
the  Revolution. 

"This  was  just  as  untrue,"  he  says,  "as  was  the  legend  of  the 
land  given  back  to  the  peasants  by  the  Revolution.  The  men 
dressed  in  fish-women's  clothes,  whom  Choderlos  de  Laclos,  the 
agent  of  the  Duke  of  Orleans,  hurled  against  Versailles  in  October 
(1789),  the  men  armed  with  pikes,  ....  the  active  sans- culottes 
who  composed  the  Terrorist  army,  never  counted  more  than  2000 
or  3000  persons  in  France ;  and  these  were  recruited  from  among 
men  who  had  lost  caste,  or  who  were  convicted  malefactors,  rather 
than  from  the  ranks  of  the  people. 

"  Just  when  the  Revolutionists  were  finally  suppressing  all  cor- 
porations, the  laboring  classes  made  a  formidable  protestation 
against  the  act.  On  June  loth,  1790,  five  thousand  shoemakers 
met  in  the  Champs  Elysees ;  and  the  carpenters  grouped  them- 
selves about  the  Archbishop's  residence.  The  masons,  slaters,  and 
printers  assembled  at  other  places  in  the  city.  Bailly,  Mayor  of 
Paris,  who  was  rightfully  guillotined  for  having  shot  down  the 
people  when  he  was  in  power,  and  who  excited  the  people  to  rebel 
when  he  was  out  of  office,  ....  said  to  the  assembled  tradesmen : 
'  As  men,  you  possess  every  right,  especially  that  of  starving.  .  .  . ' 
A  combination  of  workingmen  to  obtain  uniform  wages,  and  to 
compel  their  fellow-workmen  to  accept  the  rate  of  wages  thus 
fixed,  would  be  a  coalition  injurious  to  their  own  interests.  It 
would  be  a  violation  of  the  law,  an  upsetting  of  public  order,  a 
serious  injury  to  the  general  welfare." 

"This,"  M.  Drumont  goes  on  to  say, '' is  just  what  those  in 
power  to-day  in  France,  the  bourgeoisie  of  1889,  are  just  doing 
over  again." 

After  having  been  mocked  by  Bailly,  the  tradesmen  petitioned 
the  National  Assembly.  There  all  meetings  of  workingmen  and 
tradesmen  are  declared  to  be  unconstitutional,  inasmuch  as  cor- 
porations have  been  legally  abolished. 

A  little  later  the  Committee  of  Public  Safety  decreed  that  all 
workingmen  who  dared  to  unite  to  demand  an  increase  of  wages 
should  forthwith  be  sent  before  the  Revolutionary  Tribunal — that 
is,  to  the  guillotine  ! 

Not  till  the  reign  of  Napoleon  III.  were  workingmen  in  PVance 
allowed  to  associate  or  to  strike  for  higher  wages. 

1  La  Fin  (fun  Monde,  Book  I.,  pp.  3-6. 

Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States,  ; 

Furthermore,  it  is  now  well  ascertained  that  the  people  the  true 
people,  both  in  the  cities  and  in  the  country-places,  were  almost 
unanimously  opposed  to  the  Revolution.  And  M.  Drumont 
quotes,  in  proof  of  this,  statistics  published  by  that  excellent  work- 
ingmen's  journal  published  in  Paris,  La  Corporation,  going  to  show 
that  out  of  12,000  persons  condemned  to  death  by  the  guillotine, 
and  whose  names  and  professions  are  well  ascertained— 7545  were 
men  of  the  people— peasants,  farm-laborers,  workmen,  servants. 

And  it  was  the  popular  masses  who  were  sent  by  the  Convention, 
and  afterwards  by' Bonaparte,  to  fill  the  Revolutionary  and  Impe- 
rial armies,  and  to  die  on  all  the  battle-fields  of  Europe. 

Not  till  the  old  and  victimized  popular  generation  had  disap- 
peared were  the  all-powerful  bourgeoisie,  through  the  public  press, 
able  to  convince  the  younger  generation  that  the  Revolution  was 
the  work  of  the  people.  Then  the  proletaires  or  non-proprietary 
classes  began  to  work  for  the  middle-class  who  now  owned  the 
land  and  gathered  the  golden  harvest,  and  to  secure  to  them  the 
possession  of  their  ill-gotten  power  and  wealth. 

The  men  who  filled  the  National  Convention  in  the  last  days  of 
its  reign  had  all  cheaply  purchased  their  broad  acres  and  warmly 
feathered  their  nests.  They  decreed  that  the  old  custom  of  con- 
fiscating property,  as  a  punishment  for  enormous  crime,  should  be 
done  away  with,  as  a  relic  of  medieval  barbarism! 

They  thus  secured  their  own  estates  against  all  future  accidents. 

The  restored  Bourbons  sanctioned  all  that  1793  had  done,  by 
refraining  from  troubling  the  new  possessors.  So  that  the 
bourgeoisie^  now  completely  triumphant,  were  free  to  settle  their 
relations  with  the  working  classes.  They  reorganized  labor  as  they 

And  here  comes  in  what  is  most  vital  in  the  social  question  in 
France.  The  abstract  question  of  the  rights  of  property  has  long 
ago  been  exhaustively  discussed  in  France,  both  on  the  side  of  the 
Catholic  Church  and  on  that'  of  the  positivists,  socialists,  and 
theorists  of  every  color.  So  have  been  the  relations  between  cap- 
ital and  production,  between  the  employer  and  the  workingman. 
The  Catholic  Church  is  no  theorist.  She  sets  about  binding  up 
and  healing  the  wounds  of  society,  while  others  are  speculating 
about  their  origin,  their  consequences,  and  their  treatment. 

In  no  country  in  the  world— since  the  Revolution  and  anti- 
Christian  Freemasonry  have  taken  out  of  the  hands  of  religion  the 
people  and  institutions  of  Italy— has  that  same  rehgion' done  more 
for  the  workingman  and  the  indigent  classes  than  in  the  land  of 
France.  Nowhere,  at  this  moment,  can  the  statesman  and  econo 
mist  behold  such  admirably  organized  hosts  of  men  and  women, 
whose  best  efforts  are  devoted  to  the  enlightenment  of  the  laboring 

8  American   Catholic  Quarterly  Reviezv. 

classes;  to  their  moral,  intellectual,  and  physical  elevation;  and 
to  bringing-  about  between  capital  and  labor,  between  masters  and 
their  workmen,  that  perfect  harmony  of  interests  which  can  only 
repose  on  practical  brotherly  love. 

The  three  published  volumes  of  Count  Albert  de  Mun's  dis- 
courses leave  not  one  question  regarding  the  wrongs  and  rights 
of  workingmen  untouched.  There  is  not  a  single  practical  remedy 
ever  devised  by  human  wisdom,  or  supernatural  charity,  for  the 
evils  which  embitter  the  hearts  and  darken  the  lives  of  the  toilers 
of  earth  or  its  disinherited  poor,  that  the  noble  director  of  the 
workingmen's  circles  has  not  most  eloquently  described  and  most 
efficiently  applied. 

Here  in  Paris  thousands  upon  thousands  of  the  children  of  toil, 
young  and  old,  look  up  to  him  with  a  gratitude  and  a  veneration 
which  are  only  paid  to  men  who  have  something  God-like  about 
them,  and  who  are  felt  to  be  God's  instruments  for  good. 

To  us  it  is  a  wonder  how  one  man,  of  delicate  health  too,  and 
with  heavy  and  responsible  duties  to  discharge  in  his  place  in  Par- 
liament, can  find  time  and  strength  to  multiply  his  presence  all 
over  France,  wherever  there  is  need  of  founding  or  developing 
one  of  these  workingmen's  circles,  and  to  deliver  there  a  discourse 
which  you  could  wish  to  see  printed  in  letters  of  gold,  on  tablets  as 
durable  as  bronze,  and  hung  up  there  forever. 

Catholics  in  America,  friends  and  helpers  of  the  workingman 
everywhere,  who  only  know  and  love  Count  de  Mun  for  his  most 
eloquent  and  most  successful  advocacy  of  the  duties  as  well  as 
the  rights  of  capital  and  labor ;  for  his  enforcement  of  the  Gospel 
law  of  equality,  fraternity,  and  liberty,  will  be  sorry  to  see  any  shade 
cast  on  so  bright  and  pure  a  name  in  M.  Drumont's  pages. 

But  there  are,  besides,  among  the  bourgeois,  or  wealthy  middle 
classes  in  France,  many  and  many  a  noble  Christian  man  and 
woman  who  make  it  the  pride,  the  duty,  the  pleasure  of  their  life 
to  help  Count  Albert  de  Mun  in  promoting  all  his  great  works  of 
social  charity.  We  need  only  mention  the  two  Harmels,  father 
and  son,  wealthy  manufacturers,  who  are  not  only  benefactors  and 
fathers  to  their  numerous  workmen,  but  who  are,  moreover,  the 
apostles  of  that  true  Christian  socialism  which  the  Church  preaches, 
practises,  enforces,  whenever  or  wherever  she  is  free  to  do  so. 

Again,  looking  to  the  Catholic  journalists  and  publicists  of 
France,  men  who  have  rendered,  during  the  present  century,  the 
most  precious  services  to  religion  and  society,  we  find  that  five- 
sixths  of  them  belong  to  the  middle-class.  We  have  only  to  name 
such  men  as  the  illustrious  brothers,  Louis  and  Eugene  Veuillot, 
together  with  the  staff  of  men  who,  for  more  than  fifty  years,  have 
been  foremost  in  the  front  ranks  of  the  battle  against  Antichrist. 

Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States.  9 

Noblemen  and  bourgeois  stand  there  side  by  side,  forgetting  all  the 
differences  of  birth  and  social  position,  and  mindful  only  of  the 
one  duty  of  doing  a  true  yeoman's  work  in  the  cause  of  God  and 
the  poor. 

The  same  is  to  be  said  of  the  French  Catholic  clergy.  Its  ranks 
are  recruited  from  every  class  in  society.  If  the  majority  are  taken 
from  the  families  of  the  peasantry  and  the  laboring  poor,  the 
wealthy  bourgeoisie  contribute  many  glorious  names  to  the  mi- 
nority, while,  perhaps,  the  old  nobility  contribute  a  still  larger 

It  is  none  the  less  but  too  true  that  the  Voltairian  middle  classes 
are  now  more  than  ever,  and  have  been  ever  since  1830,  the  con- 
trolling force  in  French  politics,  French  public  opinion,  and  French 
education.  Since  the  accession  of  Napoleon  III.  the  Masonic 
power  has  drawn  into  its  nets  the  generations  educated  in  the 
government  schools.  By  slow  but  steady  degrees  the  lodges  have 
controlled  the  administration,  the  army  and  navy,  the  hosts  of  men 
and  women  under  the  command  of  the  Minister  of  Public  Instruc- 
tion, and  the  still  more  numerous  hosts  of  officials  in  every  de- 
partment of  the  public  service. 

It  is,  at  this  moment,  notorious  that  no  man  or  woman  has  the 
slightest  chance  of  public  employment  or  advancement,  unless 
such  as  are  affiliated  to  these  openly  and  avowedly  anti-Christian 

It  will  throw  no  little  light  on  what  we  have  to  say  of  the  land 
and  agricultural  movement  in  the  United  States,  to  glance  here  at 
what  monopolists  are  doing  in  France  to  ruin  the  latter  and  de- 
preciate the  former. 

"The  most  odious  monopoly  of  all,"  says  M.  Drumont,' "  the 
monopoly  which  will  end  by  letting  loose  on  the  Jews  and  their 
followers  the  public  indignation,  is  that  which  is  practised  on  all 
articles  of  prime  necessity,  on  the  industry  and  very  existence  of 
mankind.  .  .  .  The  Rothschilds  could  not  help  being  impelled 
into  such  monopolies  as  this,  and  thereby  to  aim  at  our  absolute, 
complete,  total  subjugation. 

"The  Graineterie  Frangaise  (the  'commerce  or  monopoly  of 
French  grains  ')  •  •  •  ^^^'^  covered  the  market-places  of  Paris  with 
fresh  ruins,  after  the  sad  trials  already  heaped  on  our  growers;  the 
'  combine '  has  flooded  the  market  with  foreign  corn,  and  has  thus 
taken  away  from  our  French  farmers  the  small  profit  they  might 
have  derived  from  a  season  exceptionally  favorable. 

"  This  grain  monopoly,  exclusively  controlled  by  German  Jews, 
we  are  informed  by  La  Gazette  des  Campagnes ,  s^cmg  that,  during 
the   month    of  May  ( 1 886)^^ther^was^^aU^^ 

1  La  Fin  cfun  Monde,  pp.  S^-'ii^- 

10  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

prospect  of  a  poor  harvest,  .  .  .  made  an  arrangement  with  the 
Bank  of  Nevada,  and  purchased  all  the  wheat  stored  up  in  Chicago, 
New  York,  St.  Louis,  and  San  Francisco.  On  June  15th  they 
had  thus  purchased  37,000,000  of  hectolitres  of  American  wheat. 

"  Thus  encouraged,  the  Jewish  speculators  bought  up  that  same 
week  all  the  grain  to  be  found  on  the  markets  of  Liverpool,  Lon- 
don, Hamburg,  and  Berlin,  to  the  amount  of  3,500,000  of  hecto- 

"  In  less  than  a  week  the  Jewish  combine  had  raised  the  price  of 
wheat  up  to  ;^  10.50,  $\\.J^,  and  ;^i2.oo  a  sack. 

"The  trick  was  played,  and  the  unfortunate  purchasers  who 
happened  to  be  uncovered,  were  obliged  to  pass  through  the 
Purees  Caudince  of  the  band. 

"Then  came  fine  weather  in  June;  the  prices  fell,  and  the  37,- 
000,000  of  hectolitres  of  American  wheat  were  sold  for  ;^2.oo,  ;^2.25, 
and  ^1.80  the  hectolitre. 

"  This  edifying  narrative  (says  M.  Louis  Herve,  quoted  by  Le 
Monde)  gives  us  some  perception  of  the  Credit  Agricole  as  carried 
on  by  the  Semitic  race  both  in  the  Old  World  and  in  the  New. 
This  explains  to  us  the  incredible  and  absurd  fluctuations  under- 
gone by  grain  and  flour  during  the  last  four  months. 

"Free  traders  must  be  very  blind  if  they  do  not,  by  this  time, 
know  who  is  to  be  held  accountable  for  the  high  price  of  bread, 
and  that  the  wheat-grower  is  the  first  victim  of  these  cosmopolitan 
stock-gamblers.  .  .  .  At  this  moment  they  are  laying  their  Semitic 
claws  on  the  coal-mining  stocks  of  England,  Belgium,  France,  and 
Germany,  so  as  to  control  the  sales  and  dictate  their  law  to  all 

M.  Drumont  here  accuses  the  French  Minister  of  War  of  playing 
into  the  hands  of  the  "  Cosmopolitans,"  and  of  so  ruining  French 
agriculture  that  in  case  of  a  war  with  Germany,  German  Jews  would 
alone  have  the  provisioning  of  both  armies.  "  The  protestations  of  our 
farmers,"  he  says,  "  the  remonstrances  of  the  Department  Councils, 
petitions  addressed  to  the  Government — all  is  useless.  The  Min- 
ister of  War,  no  matter  who  he  is,  knows  well  that  on  the  very  day 
he  would  cease  to  serve  the  Jewish  interest  he  would  be  put  out  of 
office  by  the  votes  of  the  Freemasons,  who  are  sold  to  Israel." 

These  are  terrible  accusations.  But  up  to  the  present  moment 
no  one  has  attempted  to  refute  them  seriously.  The  only  replies 
to  the  author's  courageous  denunciations  of  such  wholesale  treason 
come  from  persons  who  smart  under  the  pitiless  lash  of  the  writer. 

"What  we  have  said,"  M.  Drumont  tells  us,  further  on,  "  on  the 
syndicate  on  wheat,  is  literally  applicable  to  the  syndicate  on 
sugar.  .  .  .  The  Jews  began  by  disturbing  the  market  by  their  whole- 
sale purchases  and  their  deals.     The  sugar  manufacturers  and  re- 

Land  ana  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States. 

I  r 

finers,  unable  to  contend  against  this  formidable  combination  were 
either  rumed  out  and  out,  or  forced  to  play  into  the  hands  of  the 
speculators.  Those  who  thus  sided  with  the  Jews  have  had  no 
reason  to  complain.  For,  in  the  sitting  of  the  Chamber  of  Deputies 
of  January  15,  1886,  M.  Sans-Leroy  declared  that  the  refiners  of 
Paris  received  in  a  single  year  eight  millions  of  dollars  as  their 
share  of  the  fraudulent  profits  thus  realized. 

"  While  these  parasites  are  thus  growing  rich,  the  true  laborers— 
the  producers— are  reduced  to  extreme  poverty.  Many  farmers 
have  given  up  cultivating  flax,  growing  wool,  wheat,  and  the  white 
poppy/  and  concentrate  all  their  industry  on  raising  the  beet- 
root.    They  have  gained  nothing  by  it. 

"  Never,  since  the  world  has  existed,  have  men  seen  a  band  of 
cosmopolitan  freebooters  displaying  such  hardihood,  upsetting 
with  such  light-heartedness  all  the  conditions  of  existence  among 
peoples  ;  introducing  so  unblushingly  into  the  peaceful  habits  of 
trade  gambling,  false  reports,  lying,  .and  thereby  brutally  ruining 
thousands  of  men  to  enrich  themselves.  This  is  the  phenomenon 
of  the  closing  century." 

The  bourgeois  class,  therefore,  who  now  govern  France,  have 
saddled  the  country  with  an  ever-increasing  load  of  debt  out  of 
which  there  seems  to  be,  in  the  present  paralysis  of  agriculture 
and  the  rapid  decline  of  all  manner  of  national  industry,  no  issue 
but  national  bankruptcy ;  these  are  the  men  on  whom  M.  Dru- 
mont  vents  his  patriotic  wrath.  Just  as  we  are  writing  this,  the  law- 
suits instituted,  with  the  authorization  of  Parliament,  against  the 
two  Deputies,  Daniel  Wilson  and  Numa  Gilly,  promise  to  unveil 
such  an  extent  of  official  corruption  as  fully  justifies  M.  Drumont's 
vehement  and  frequent  denunciations. 

Too  true  is  it,  then,  that  the  bourgeoisie  to-day  in  power  are  the 
descendants  and  the  heirs  of  the  men  who  made  the  Revolution 
of  1789,  who  alone  profited  by  its  wholesale  confiscations,  and 
who,  in  1889,  are  determined  to  wrest  from  their  Catholic  or  mon- 
archical adversaries  every  remnant  of  their  vested  rights,  every 
shred  of  religious  and  political  liberty. 

This  is  the  situation  which  the  civilized  world  should  consider 
attentively.  It  has  its  lessons  for  the  freemen  of  America,  as  well 
as  for  the  subjects  of  every  power  in  Europe. 

The  Paris  Municipal  Council,  the  great  majority  of  which  is 
made  up  of  men  of  the  class  we  have  been  describing,  is  openly 
devoted  to  the  realization  of  the  most  advanced  forms  of  anti- 
Christian  socialism.  Nothing  but  the  merest  accident  can  prevent 
this  powerful  body  of  determined  men  from  proclaiming,  at  any 
1  The  salad  oil  produced  by  the  white  poppy  {oeillet)  rivals,  among  the  poor  at 
least,  the  fruit  of  the  olive. 

12  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

moment,  the  supremacy  of  the  Commune.  And  this  example  is 
sure  to  be  followed  by  Lyons  and  Marseilles,  and  other  French 
cities.  The  present  Floquet-Lockroy  Ministry  are  pledged  to  a 
revision  of  the  Constitution  in  an  extreme  radical  sense,  to  the 
abolition  of  the  Senate  and  the  Presidency,  to  the  repeal  of  the 
Concordat,  the  suppression  of  the  salaries  paid  to  the  clergy,  to 
the  sequestration  of  all  Church  property,  as  well  as  of  that  belong- 
ing to  all  religious  or  quasi-religious  associations,  or  even  in- 

On  the  ruins  of  the  Church  and  State,  of  the  old  Christian 
order,  thus  swept  out  of  existence,  the  men  in  power  will  build 
up,  or  attempt  to  build  up,  a  community  governed  by  the  prin- 
ciples of  advanced  socialism,  collectivism,  and  anarchism  com- 
bined. They  will,  perhaps,  call  it  a  Social-Democratic  Republic ; 
but  God  only  knows  what  it  will  be. 

M.  Drumont,  who,  it  seems,  is  not  unwelcome  among  the  an- 
archistic leaders,  thus  describes  their  near  expectations  :  "  Once," 
said  they,  "that  we  are  put  in  possession,  ourselves,  our  wives  and 
children,  of  the  palatial  residences  and  beautiful  houses  of  the 
aristocratic  quarters  (of  Paris),  and  when  w^e  shall  have  burned 
down  the  registry  offices,  those  of  the  lawyers  and  notaries,  the 
seat  of  every  public  administration — those  who  should  attempt  to 
turn  us  out  must  be  clever  indeed  !  " 

**  It  is  through  kindness  to  me,"  adds  M.  Drumont,  "  that  several 
of  these  men  have  assured  me  that  they  entertained  no  special  ill- 
will  toward  the  churches ;  that  they  only  intended  to  burn  all 
baptismal  registers  that  could  help  people  to  establish  their  civil 

The  supremacy  of  the  hitherto  oppressed  and  suffering  working 
classes,  without  any  faith  in  God  or  belief  in  the  life  to  come ; 
without  any  religion  but  the  worship  of  their  own  notions  of  right, 
and  no  law  but  the  gratification  of  their  desires,  such  is  the  ideal 
government  these  madmen  contemplate. 

Is  it,  then,  wonderful  that,  in  presence  of  such  imminent  and 
fearful  changes,  all  Frenchmen  who  love  the  true  greatness  of  their 
country,  who  cling  to  the  religion  of  their  forefathers,  and  would 
preserve  the  popular  masses  from  the  anti-Christian  deluge  now 
sweeping  over  Europe,  should  combine  and  exert  themselves  he- 
roically to  bring  the  laboring  classes  and  the  poor  into  the  Ark  of 
Christian  principle,  peace  and  practice  ? 

We  should  be,  therefore,  much  more  anxious  to  see  the  Work- 
ingmen's  Circles  founded  by  Count  de  Mun  and  M.  Chesnelong, 
and  patronized  by  such  true  "  Knights  of  Labor"  as  the  MM.  Har- 
mel,  Abbe  Gamier  and  Cardinal  Langenieux,  flourishing  and  mul- 

1  La  Fin  d^un  Monde,  p.  28. 

Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States.  \  -i 

tiplying  their  numbers  over  France,  than  concerned  about  the 
plans  proposed  for  recovering  from  the  International  Bank  and 
the  Rothschilds  the  thousands  of  millions  accumulated  by  criminal 
and  fraudulent  speculation. 

Until  Frenchmen  themselves  cease  to  tolerate,  to  encourage,  to 
participate  in  these  godless  schemes  for  acquiring  sudden  and 
enormous  wealth  at  the  expense  of  the  public,  to  the  detriment  of 
all  lawful  industry  and  of  the  national  honor  and  credit— it  were, 
apparently,  idle  to  declaim  against  the  foreigners  who  build  up 
gigantic  fortunes  on  the  foibles  and  follies  of  the  native-born 

We  in  America  are  dll  too  familiar  with  the  methods  of  such 
greedy  and  unprincipled  speculators.  Until  the  laws  of  our 
country,  supported  by  a  sound  public  opinion,  shall  have  stepped 
in  to  restrain  stock  gambling  and  to  punish  the  gamblers,  we  shall 
continue  to  have  our  "  Black  Friday."  We  have  also  our  trusts, 
our  pools,  our  combines,  our  monopolies — as  they  have  them  in 
France  and  the  adjacent  countries. 

All  these  are  the  curse  of  legitimate  and  honest  labor,  just  as 
they  are  the  excesses  and  abuses  of  the  money-power  in  every 
State.  Nevertheless,  in  the  interest  of  labor  itself,  it  were  better 
not  to  call  in  the  interference  of  the  State,  unless  compelled  to  do 
so  by  the  direst  extremity. 

But  in  France,  as  well  as  in  Belgium,  the  only  remedy  found  for 
the  oppression  and  suffering  produced  by  the  omnipotence  of 
capital,  and  the  greed  of  great  corporations,  is  to  adapt  to  modern 
circumstances  the  systems  counseled  by  religion  in  the  mediaeval 
cities,  and  which  made  starvation,  pauperism,  and  a  helpless  old 
age  things  unknown  among  their  guildsmen  or  trades-unions. 

To  come  to  specific  and  practical  measures  for  benefiting  the 
laboring  classes,  those,  in  particular,  who  are  employed  in  large 
manufacturing  or  mining  centres,  we  must  be  allowed  to  quote  here 
from  La  Reforme  Sociale  of  October  i6th  last,  passages  from  a 
paper  read  at  Lille,  in  the  month  of  April,  before  a  general  assem- 
bly of  the  Catholic  Unions  of  Flanders,  Artois,  and  Picardie.  The 
paper  was  written  and  read  by  M.  Guary,  Director-General  of  the 
Coal  Mines  of  Anzin,  who  presided  in  the  Assembly  at  Lille,  and 
is  a  type  of  the  true  Catholic  bourgeoisie,  devoted  heart  and  soul  to 
the  work  of  elevating  the  thousands  of  miners  and  workers  under 

The  object  of  the  paper  is  to  show  how  the  "  Patroqage"  of  the 
great  Coal-Mining  Company  of  Anzin,  established  in  1757,  is 
exercised  for  the  protection  of  all  its  employees  and  their  families, 
so  as  to  secure  them  cheap  clothing,  provisions,  medical  assistance, 
comfortable    and    healthy    lodgings,  religious   education    for  the 

14  American   Catha/ic  Quarterly  Review. 

children,  religious  instruction  for  all,  and  certain  provision  against 
infirmity  and  old  age. 

In  1865  the  company  established  co-operative  stores,  under  the 
name  of  "  Co-operative  Society  of  the  Coal-Miners  of  Anzin." 
They  began  with  a  capital  of  ;^6ooo  divided  into  ;^io  shares. 
This  was  employed  in  purchasing  cloths  and  stuffs,  hosiery,  etc., 
together  with  flour,  bread,  groceries,  lard  and  bacon.  At  first 
butcher's  meat  was  bought  and  sold  out  to  the  men.  But  they 
gave  it  up  in  summer.  All  the  articles  bought  are  of  good  quality, 
and  are  sold  at  the  current  prices  in  the  district,  the  profits  all 
going  to  the  miners  themselves,  who  are  the  only  shareholders. 

The  capital  invested  steadily  increased,  till  it  reached  ^50,000 
in  1888,  the  number  of  shareholders  being  3,022,  about  one-half  of 
the  employees  of  the  company.  Many  of  the  miners  live  too 
far  away  from  the  stores  or  shops,  of  which  there  are  fourteen,  to 
be  able  to  avail  themselves  of  their  advantages. 

The  company  at  first  only  gave  the  ground  for  the  first  store, 
then  it  gave  gratuitously  the  ground  and  all  the  building  materials. 
Now  that  the  society  is  a  great  success,  it  limits  itself  to  carrying 
free  all  the  merchandise  and  provisions  needed  by  the  stores. 

The  directors  aimed  not  only  to  teach  the  workingmen  the 
rules  and  practice  of  domestic  economy,  but  the  manner  as  well  of 
managing  the  entire  business  of  the  co-operative  stores  themselves. 
So  among  the  nine  members  of  the  Board  of  Managers,  five  are 
workingmen  ;  the  others  are  an  ex-agent  of  the  company,  an  en- 
gineer, the  superintendent,  physician,  and  a  druggist.  All  these 
are  selected  by  the  shareholders. 

The  first  effect  produced  by  the  working  of  the  society  was  to 
prevent  the  miners  from  getting  into  debt,  and  to  help  them  to 
get  out  of  it.  The  shareholders  are  given  a  fortnight's  credit  for 
their  purchases.  These  must  be  paid  for  at  the  end  of  the  second 
week.  No  advance  is  given  on  unearned  salaries.  If  the  last 
fortnight's  accounts  are  not  paid  up,  no  articles  are  given  to.  the 
debtor,  except  for  cash  paid  down,  unless  he  should  have  sickness 
or  some  misfortune  in  his  family,  which  in  the  judgment  of  the 
board  should  justify  an  extension  of  credit. 

The  lodging-houses  provided  for  the  miners  are  spacious, 
healthy,  comfortable,  well  kept,  and  erected  with  a  view  to  securing 
family  privacy.  Each  family  pays  about  ;^i  per  month  for  house- 
rent.     Each  cottage  has  also  a  nice  garden-plot. 

In  the  beginning  the  company  generously  encouraged  their 
workmen  to  become  the  owners  of  their  own  cottages  ;  and  for 
this  purpose  they  gave  the  buildings  just  for  what  they  had  cost, 
accepting  instalments  of  about  $-^  a  month  in  payment  of  the  debt 
and  no  interest  being  asked  on  the  capital  expended  in  the  erec- 

Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States.  \  c 

tion.  But,  as  the  French  law  does  not  allow  parents  to  leave  their 
property  to  the  oldest  or  the  best-behaved  child,  these  cottages, 
on  the  death  of  the  first  owners,  were  sold  by  the  Government  at 
public  auction  to  the  highest  bidder.  And  in  more  than  one  in- 
stance the  house  thus  sold  was  turned  into  a  tavern.  'Twas  a 
pity ;  but  the  company  found  it  wiser  to  help  the  cottagers  to 
live  comfortably  and  to  lay  by  their  savings  for  old  age. 

Since  1833  means  have  been  taken  by  the  company,  with  the 
co-operation  of  the  miners,  to  establish  a  savings  bank  for  sick- 
ness and  old  age;  for  widows  and  orphans.  Thereby  these 
thousands  of  laborers  can  look  forward  without  anxiety  to  the 
time  when  they  can  no  longer  work. 

As  religion,  since  the  first  establishment  of  this  company,  has 
been  one  of  its  directing  forces,  one  may  expect  to  see  the  educa- 
tion of  the  children  and  young  people  also  well  provided  for.  They 
have  religious  masters  for  the  boys ;  and  the  girls'  schools  are 
under  the  charge  of  Sisters,  who  also  minister  to  the  sick  and 
bring  them  the  prescribed  medicines,  etc. 

To  the  girls'  schools  are  attached  workshops,  where  the  pupils 
are  taught  household  work,  sewing,  mending,  washing,  bleaching, 
and  tailoring.  As  there  is  a  school  for  master-miners,  the  boys, 
after  their  first  elementary  instruction,  are  sent  to  this  when  they 
give  good  promise  of  talent  and  proficiency. 

Every  mining  village  has  its  church,  where  the  people  regularly 
attend  the  Sunday  services,  and  are  instructed  in  the  Christian 
doctrine  and  the  duties  of  Christian  life.  The  children,  on  making 
their  first  communion,  receive  each  a  gratuity  of  12  francs;  and 
the  boys  get  a  complete  outfit  the  first  time  they  are  sent  down  in 
the  mines. 

The  expenses  of  public  w^orship,  the  services  of  the  priest,  and 
those  of  the  physician,  are  all  paid  by  the  company. 

M.  Guary,  from  whose  paper  these  details  have  been  taken,  has 
some  passages  toward  the  end  which  should  be  textually  quoted. 
He  is  a  disciple  of  Frederic  Le  Play,  and  thus  speaks  of  what  hap- 
pened at  the  meeting  of  the  Society  of  Social  Economy  in  1887 : 

"  In  his  eloquent  address  at  the  opening  of  our  annual  assembly 
of  1887,  M.  George  Picot  described  what  he  had  witnessed  at 
Lille.  Let  those  whose  modesty  I  may  alarm  by  quoting  his 
words — for  souls  above  the  common  modestly  conceal  their  good 
deeds— forgive  my  repeating  what  he  says,  since  they  illustrate 
the  truth  I  would  inculcate.  I  should  have  known  nothing,  says 
the  eminent  Academician,  '  if  I  had  only  followed  the  material 
details  of  the  care  and  solicitude  of  the  president  of  the  company. 
I  learned  that  not  one  workman  was  ever  laid  up  who  was  not 
visited   in    his   sickness   by  the  family  of  some  one  of  his  em- 

1 6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

ployers ;  that  not  a  child  fell  sick,  or  a  death  occurred  without 
having  some  member  of  their  families  to  see  to  the  little  sufferer, 
or  to  comfort  the  dying  in  the  hour  of  supreme  need.  Thus 
was  peace  made  between  master  and  workman;  thus  was  it 
maintained ' 

"  Why,"  continues  M.  Guary,  "  does  the  magnanimous  conduct 
so  touchingly  described  by  M.  Picot  find  so  few  imitators  among 
us  ?  Why  are  the  poor  and  the  rich  so  seldom  brought  together 
by  an  intercourse  which  is  the  incomparable  remedy  for  curing 
the  wounds  of  both  the  one  and  the  other  ?  ....  By  such  inter- 
course we  could  teach  the  sufferer  that  the  Christian  religion, 
from  which  people  try  to  turn  his  heart  away,  is  his  sole  and  best 
comfort  and  consolation,  as  well  as  the  honor  and  glory  of  the 
lowly  and  the  weak. 

"  We  need  intermediaries  between  the  workingman  and  those 
above  him.  Since  we  are  all  here  a  single  family,  the  family  of 
Frederic  Le  Play,  allow  me  to  speak  out  what  is  in  my  mind. 
While  glancing  over  the  list  of  our  '  Social  Unions,'  it  seems  to 
me  that  we  have  in  them  an  army  of  officers ;  but  there  are 
neither  non-commissioned  officers  nor  soldiers,  without  whom 
there  is  no  chance  of  winning  a  battle.  We  must  by  all  means 
recruit  this  class  of  men  ;^  and  they  are  to  be  found  among  edu- 
cated young  men  who  have  a  career  before  them  and  a  reputation 
to  make.  Then  they  should  help  to  direct  and  protect  the  future 
of  artisans  and  head-workmen,  of  all  that  numerous  class  who, 
to  use  the  words  of  M.  Picot,  '  have  many  spare  hours  to  dispose 
of,  many  idle  days  on  their  hands;  and  who,  if  they  could  only  be 
banded  together,  would  soon  cast  off  their  drooping  spirits,  and 
become  joyous  and  energetic  in  the  new  hopes  which  would  give 
them  restored  life  and  strength.' 

"  How  shall  we  realize  our  purpose?  This  is  a  question  to 
which  the  leaders  of  our  school  of  social  peace  must,  in  their  devo- 
tion, find  an  answer." 

Deep  as  is  the  need  of  that  social  peace  in  France,  we  in  America 
begin  to  feel  that  the  mighty  struggle  between  capital  and  labor 
should,  among  ourselves,  be  brought  to  a  speedy  and  peaceful 

The  past  year  was  stormy  and  threatening  enough  in  the  world 
of  industry.     The  Church,  the  Divine  Teacher  and  Peacemaker, 

1  These  Social  Unions,  as  mentioned  in  a  preceding  article,  are  made  up  of  two 
distinct  but  kindred  societies,  the  "  Society  of  Social  Economy  "  and  the  "  Unions  of 
Social  Peace,"  both  combining  their  efforts  to  carry  out  the  darling  object  of  the  illus- 
trious Frederic  Le  Play— the  reform  of  society  in  France.  The  members  of  both 
groups  are  the  most  distinguished  magistrates,  jurists,  publicists,  and  economists  in 
Europe  ;  they  should,  as  suggested  by  M.  Guary,  call  to  their  assistance  all  the 
Catholic  educated  youth  of  their  country. 

Land  and  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States.  17 

has  done  not  a  little  to  still  the  tempest.  It  is  timely,  it  is  wise, 
to  listen  to  the  men  who  have  again  and  again  crossed  this  stormy 
zone,  and  noted  its  phenomena.    Such  a  one  is  M.  Claudio  Jannet 


In  order  to  prepare  the  fourth  edition  of  his  now  classical  work, 
Les  Etats  Unis  Contemporains,  M.  Jannet  visited  our  country  as 
well  as  Canada,  observing,  noting  everything  worthy  of  observa- 
tion ;  conversing  with  the  most  eminent  public  men ;  examining 
our  public  establishments  of  every  kind  ;  questioning  men  of 
opposite  parties  and  opinions ;  in  one  word,  taking  every  means 
to  arrive  at  a  just  and  enlightened  opinion  regarding  our  political 
and  economical  condition. 

With  the  former  issues  of  his  book  the  most  competent  publicists 
in  America,  Protestant  as  well  as  Catholic,  have  expressed  their 
great  satisfaction..  Doubtless,  ere  this  article  appears  in  print,  the 
American  press  will  have  pronounced  their  judgment  on  the  two 
volumes  now  before  us,  and  which  contain  the  mature  and  perfect 
fruit  of  the  author's  conscientious  researches. 

His  conclusions  are  summed  up  in  a  remarkable  address 
delivered  on  the  29th  of  last  May,  before  a  general  meeting  of  the 
Union  de  la  Patx  Sociale,  and  which  w^e  had  the  pleasure  of  hearing. 
The  discourse,  published  in  La  Refonne  Sociale  of  October  i6th 
and  November  ist,  bears  for  title  "The  Social  Constitution  of  the 
United  States  in  1888." 

Speaking  of  the  land  and  labor  questions  as  influenced  by  the 
rapid  increase  of  our  population  and  the  incoming  yearly  tide  of 
emigrants  from  foreign  parts,  M.  Jannet  says  : 

"A  very  important  fact  is  here  to  be  noted,  namely,  that  in  our 
days  there  has  arisen  quite  a  hostile  movement  against  further 
immigration,  an  evident  desire  of  stopping  this  increasing  influx 
of  strangers.  First,  the  Chinese  were  excluded,  and  this  was  justi- 
fied by  good  reasons.  It  was  important  that  a  population  of  an 
entirely  different  race  should  not  grow  in  the  Pacific  States  and 
the  West,  just  as  the  Negro  race  had  grown  up  in  the  Southern 
States.  At  this  moment,  the  opposition  goes  further  :  it  is  sought 
to  exclude  all  poor  immigrants,  even  those  of  European  race.  And 
we  may  reckon  upon  it  as  certain  that,  ere  many  years  have  passed, 
the  United  States  will  employ  restrictive  measures  to  prevent  a 
too  great  increase  in  immigration  from  Europe. 

"  More  than  one  law  has  already  been  enacted  to  hinder  Euro- 
pean capitalists  from  getting  hold  of  lands.  The  citizens  of  the 
United  States  are  determined,  henceforth,  to  keep  for  themselves 
their  patrimonial  domain,  immense  as  it  is. 

"Do   the   United   States,   then,  feel   that   their  population  is 

VOL.  XIV. — 2 

ig  Ametican  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

becoming  too  dense  ?  No.  Is  the  natural  wealth  of  their  territory 
exhausted  ?  Certainly  not  yet  But  notwithstanding  the  fact  that 
this  territorial  wealth  is  still  unexhausted,  and  that  there  is  a  wide 
and  fruitful  field  for  the  investment  of  capital,  it  is  none  the  less 
undeniable  that  the  country  no  longer  teems  with  the  abundance 
of  nature's  gifts  as  it  did  some  years  ago.  The  vast  territorial 
expanse  between  the  Alleghanies  and  the  Missouri  is  nearly  all 
filled  up.  Instead  of  getting  land  there  for  nothing,  as  in  former 
days,  the  would-be  settler  has  to  pay  for  it  a  comparatively  high 
price.  Lands  to  be  had  without  payment  are  only  to  be  had  a 
great  way  off,  further  west,  in  the  country  between  the  Missouri 
and  the  Rocky  Mountains.  There  the  climate  is  dry  and  less 
propitious ;  woods  are  scarce,  and  in  some  regions  artificial  irriga- 
tion has  to  be  resorted  to. 

"  What  conclusions  shall  we  draw  from  all  this  ?  That  to  own 
land  does  not  make  a  man  rich  ;  he  must  also  have  capital  to 
enable  him  to  cultivate  it.  Hence  the  culture  of  land  in  the  Far 
West  demands,  as  a  necessary  condition,  the  investment  of  capital 
to  give  value  to  the  husbandman's  possessions." 

M.  Jannet  goes  on  to  remark  that,  to  a  very  large  extent,  the 
owners  of  land  let  it  out  to  farmers.  This  system,  he  says,  is 
doing  great  service  to  the  country.  Very  many  persons  thus  work 
for  others  in  order  to  earn  money  enough  to  enable  them  to  pur- 
chase afterwards  farms  of  their  own.  "  To  attempt  to  settle  on 
land,  without  any  capital  whatever,  is  for  any  man  ruin,  destruction." 

In  other  territories  of  the  Republic,  especially  where  long 
droughts  prevail,  the  only  remunerative  industry  is  cattle-raising. 
Immense  extents  of  land  are  devoted  to  the  rearing  of  oxen  and 
horses.  On  these  border-lands  there  is  a  continual  rivalry,  and 
not  unfrequently  bloody  frays,  between  the  capitalists  and  the 
settlers  who  plant  their  homesteads  along  the  water-courses,  and 
who  represent  the  small  farmer  class  devoted  to  raising  cereals. 

Great  changes  have  occurred  of  late  years  in  the  agricultural 
condition  of  the  Eastern  and  Middle  States.  The  international 
commerce  which  has  produced  such  an  acute  crisis  in  the  value 
of  land  and  all  farming  produce  in  Europe,  has  had  its  parallel 
in  the  American  Republic.  The  wheat  from  India  and  the  rich 
cereal  crops  grown  in  Manitoba  have  depressed  the  value  of  the 
same  articles  both  in  the  Far  West  and  in  California. 

In  the  Eastern  and  Middle  States  no  more  cereals  are  raised. 
Pasturage,  dairy  work,  the  growing  of  vegetables,  the  rearing  of 
fowls,  etc.,  have,  according  to  M.  Jannet,  replaced  the  old  agricul- 
tural occupations  of  New  England,  whose  farmers  and  house-wives 
now  aim  to  supply  the  daily  markets  of  their  numerous  and  popu- 
lous cities. 

Land  and  Laboi-  in  France  and  the   United  States.  19 

So  much  for  the  land  and  its  industries. 

Now,  as  to  the  great  manufacturing  industries  and  the  labor 
question.  M.  Jannet  begins  by  asserting  a  fact  which  may  be  new 
to  most  of  the  readers  of  the  Review.  It  has  been  ascertained 
that  the  density  of  the  population  between  Boston  and  Baltimore 
is  nearly  equal,  square  mile  by  square  mile,  to  that  of  France, 
Belgium,  and  Germany.  This  is  the  region  which  is  thickly  studded 
with  great  cities.  There  are  situated  the  rich  deposits  of  coal  and 
petroleum.  It  is  also  the  seat  of  the  great  manufacturing  indus- 
tries. The  economical  conditions  of  this  part  of  the  United  States 
are  not  unlike  those  of  Western  Europe. 
Such  is  M.  Jannet's  estimate. 

"  Nevertheless,"  he  says,  "this  same  great  district  has  a  great 
advantage,  as  compared  with  us.  And  that  is,  that  whosoever  is 
active,  laborious,  persevering,  and,  above  all,  temperate  in  his 
habits  (this  is  a  vital  condition  in  America) — every  man  who  is 
temperate  and  saving  can  more  easily  raise  himself  up  to  com- 
petence and  wealth  than  such  a  man  could  in  our  old  Europe. 

"A  gentleman  of  wide  experience  in  Worcester,  a  large  indus- 
trial city  of  Massachusetts,  proved  some  short  time  ago  that  of  100 
leading  manufacturers  of  that  city,  ninety  began  by  being  simple 
day-laborers.  This  tells  us  that  in  such  a  country  there  is  room  for 
all  to  make  their  way  upward,  and  that  many  succeed  in  doing  so." 
This  is  the  bright  and  hopeful  side. 

But  the  dark  side  has  not  escaped  M.  Jannet's  observation. 
Women  and  even  children  have,  as  in  France  and  Belgium,  to  work 
in  our  factories  in  order  to  enable  the  family  to  live.  And  although 
the  workman's  wages  is  nominally  higher  with  us,  the  cost  of 
living  is,  comparatively,  so  much  greater  that  our  laborers  are 
worse  off  than  in  Europe.  Then  with  us  strikes  are  more  frequent, 
and  these  are  a  serious  drain  on  the  workingman's  resources. 

While  we  are  still  following  the  sagacious  French  observer 
along  the  soil  of  New  England  into  the  Middle  States,  we  must 
note  one  very  natural  omission  in  his  work — the  ruin  of  our  ship- 
building industry,  and  the  deterioration  of  our  magnificent  sea- 
faring population  into  factory  hands,  wasting  their  lives  away  in 
the  great  shoemaking  workshops  of  Lynn  and  Boston,  or  in  the 
cotton  and  woollen  factories  along  the  coast  and  in  the  interior. 

Before  our  great  Civil  War,  and  the  deep  disturbances  it  caused 
both  in  our  social  and  in  our  economical  conditions,  we  do  not 
think  there  was  in  the  world  anything  superior  to  the  m'en  who 
commanded  and  manned  our  fleets  of  clippers  and  steamships. 
Apart  from  the  irreparable  ruin  caused  to  our  native  ship-builders, 
and  to  our  carrying-trade  on  the  ocean,  there  is  the  loss  of  our 
generations  of  hardy  and  intelligent  sailors,  who  could  have  always 

20  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

secured  us  the  supremacy  on  sea  along  the  Atlantic  and  Pacific 

What  statesman  will  take  this  matter  up  and  revive  our  shipping 
industries,  and  with  them  call  back  into  life  the  glorious  American 
seamanship  of  fifty  years  ago  ? 

If  the  politicians  of  the  Atlantic  States  are  too  selfish  and  short- 
sighted to  heed  the  warnings  of  quite  recent  events,  why  does  not 
California  set  the  patriotic  example  ?  She  should  be  mistress  ol 
the  Pacific. 

M.  Jannet  next  touches  on  what  constitutes  the  great  social 
peril  of  the  United  States,  the  birth  and  growth  of  that  gigantic 
money  power  -^ich  not  only  threatens  to  oppress  all  individual 
and  local  initiative  in  industry  and  commerce,  but  to  enslave  hope- 
lessly our  laboring  populations. 

"  In  America,"  he  says,  "the  heads  of  great  industries,  powerful 
companies  like  the  Standard  Oil  Company,  which  monopolizes  the 
sale  of  petroleum,  the  proprietors  of  the  Pennsylvania  coal  mines, 
will  of  a  sudden  stop  or  limit  their  output,  without  any  thought  of 
the  hundreds  of  workmen  thrown  out  of  employment. 

"  I  am  here  pointing  out,"  he  continues,  "  what  is  the  sorest  spot 
in  the  social  constitution  of  the  United  States.  There  have 
sprung  up  there  great  financial  societies,  which  make  up  a  power 
against  which  it  is  hopeless  to  struggle.  Unhappily  these  societies 
have  not  always  a  conscientious  regard  to  their  duties,  and  treat 
their  workmen  with  heartless  cruelty."  The  author  quotes,  in 
support  of  his  assertion,  the  report  of  the  Pennsylvania  Secretary 
of  State  in  1885  :  all  but  two  millions  of  dollars  stolen  yearly  from 
the  workmen  by  a  well-organized  system  of  fraudulent  weights 
and  measures ;  the  salaries  paid  only  once  a  month,  and  cut  down 
from  ten  to  twenty  per  cent,  in  punishment  of  pretended  infractions 
of  the  rules.  Then  the  system  of  paying  the  balance  of  the  miners' 
wages  in  orders  on  the  company's  clothing  and  provision  stores — 
all  the  tyrannical  wrongs  which  cooperative  stores  of  the  miners 
of  Anzin  so  effectually  remedied. 

But  the  readers  of  the  Review,  after  all  the  harrowing  scenes 
of  last  year's  experience  in  the  coal  regions  of  Pennsylvania,  need 
only  to  be  reminded  of  the  abuses  arising  from  this  irresponsible 
money  power  to  appreciate  the  successful  efforts  made  in  France 
and  Belgium  to  attack  the  evil  in  its  very  root. 

Coming  to  the  efforts  made  to  withstand  the  oppression  exercised 
actually,  and  the  still  greater  oppression  threatened  in  the  future,  by 
these  "  combines,"  "trusts,"  monopolies,  etc.,  M.  Jannet  proceeds  : 

"  The  doctrine  which  seems  to  prevail  in  the  socialistic  organiza- 
tions of  the  United  States  is  the  collectivism  of  Karl  Marx.  What 
it  proposes  is  to  make  war  on  capital,  war  on  industrial  and  com- 
mercial capital,  with  the  aim  of  one  day  handing  over  all  this 

Land  a?id  Labor  in  France  and  the  United  States. 


capital  to  the  State  and  to  the  workingmen's  corporations  under 
the  control  of  the  State. 

"These  notions  were  extensively  circulated  among  the  Knights 
of  Labor,  although  their  present  master-workman  professed 
opmions  diametrically  opposed  to  them.  The  majority  of  the  local 
branches  of  the  order  were,  two  years  ago,  more  or  less  under  the 
influence  of  Karl  Marx's  teaching,  if  one  may  judge  from  their 
official  organs  in  the  public  press." 

M.  Jannet  then  gives  a  brief  sketch  of  the  order  up  to  the 
present  year.  "Mr.  Powderly,"  he  says,  "always  repudiated,  in 
his  own  name,  the  collectivist  doctrines.  He  would  settle  all  labor 
troubles  by  arbitration,  or  by  a  friendly  understanding  between 
employers  and  workmen.  But  strikes  were  always  the  last  resource 
{ultima  ratio)  with  the  Knights  of  Labor,  especially  where  they 
were  the  masters.  Besides,  the  entrance  into  the  order  of  numerous 
associations  already  formed,  together  with  their  staffs  of  politicians 
and  leaders,  did  not  conduce  to  unity  and  strength.  These  bodies 
had  no  idea  of  being  entirely  assimilated  ;  they  persisted  in  pur- 
suing their  own  separate  purposes.  So  that  the  general  direction 
given  by  Mr.  Powderly  was  not  followed  in  practice  by  the  mass 
of  his  adherents.  The  socialistic  elements,  underhand,  did  their 
own  work  and  spread  their  own  ideas." 

The  condemnation  of  the  Canadian  Knights  is  then  mentioned. 
A  branch  of  the  order,  with  all  its  Masonic  signs,  etc.,  had  been 
founded  in  Montreal  by  a  Jew  of  the  name  of  Heilbronner,  and 
had  caused  no  little  trouble  between  employers  and  workmen  in 
a  country  where  the  social  peace  had  never  before  been  disturbed. 
The  Canadian  bishops,  together  with  the  Cardinal-Archbishop  of 
Quebec,  condemned  the  order. 

"  In  the  United  States,  however,"  says  M.  Jannet,  "  the  American 
bishops  had  equally  good  reasons  for  not  condemning  the  Knights 
of  Labor.  For,  in  the  Republic  the  workingmen,  having  no  direct 
bond  connecting  them  with  their  employers,  no  permanent  relation 
founded  on  custom,  stand  in  need  of  an  organization  to  protect 
themselves  against  the  exactions  and  extortions  committed  against 
them  by  the  great  industrial  companies.  And,  as  the  direction 
given  by  Mr.  Powderly  to  the  order  at  the  time  [the  condemnation 
was  pronounced  in  Canada]  was  a  just  and  proper  one,  it  is  easy 
to  understand  why  the  American  bishops  remonstrated  with  the 
Holy  Father,  and  prevented  his  giving  formal  condemnation. 

"After  all,  when  we  examine  the  official  programmes  issued  by  the 
Knights  of  Labor,  and  consider  only  the  general  direction  given 
to  the  order  by  its  present  master-workman,  we  can  discover,  at 
most,  a  few  economical  errors.  Now,  Rome  has  never  yet  excom- 
municated anybody  for  economical  errors ;  and  this  is  fortunate. 
Mr.  Powderly  wants  the  State  to  work  the  railroads  and  telegraph 

22  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

lines  itself;  wants  it  to  issue  bank-notes  to  an  unlimited  amount; 
and  would  have  the  State  interfere  in  many  ways  in  controlling 

"  These  are  mere  scientific  errors — nothing  more.  And  hence 
the  prohibition  uttered  by  the  Canadian  bishops  against  the  Knights 
of  Labor  was  suspended  in  consequence  of  a  memoir  presented  to 
the  Propaganda  by  Cardinal  Gibbons,  Archbishop  of  Baltimore." 

The  decision  of  the  Propaganda,  as  well  as  the  more  recent 
decision  of  the  Holy  Father,  with  respect  to  the  Knights,  is  not, 
as  M.  Jannet  remarks,  to  be  considered  in  any  wise  as  an  approba- 
tion. "  The  majority  of  the  American  hierarchy,''  he  adds,  "  who 
took  part  in  this  proceeding,  were  careful  to  declare  that  the  Holy 
See  had  not  approved  the  order.  Every  Bishop,  in  his  own 
diocese,  gave  the  Knights  a  severe  warning,  recommending  most 
especially  that  they  should  not  violate  the  freedom  of  other 
laborers  who  do  not  belong  to  their  association,  if  they  did  not 
wish  to  court,  later  on,  a  sentence  of  condemnation. 

"  But,"  concludes  M.  Jannet,  "  there  never  will  be  any  occasion 
for  condemning  them,  since  this  gigantic  soap-bubble  has  already 

The  conclusion,  we  are  happy  to  say,  was  a  hasty  one.  The 
order,  though  apparently  much  weakened  by  defection  and  divi- 
sions, is  powerful  still.  They  have  once  more  held  their  general 
convention,  and  again  placed  Mr.  Powderly  at  their  head  as  General 
Master-Workman.  This,  with  the  latest  instruction  of  Leo  XHL 
regarding  them,  will  be  an  inducement  to  be  more  careful  in  se- 
lecting and  admitting  their  members  ;  more  careful  still  in  avoiding 
everything  that  savors  of  socialism,  even  of  the  State  socialism  ad- 
vocated by  Mr.  Powderly. 

With  men  like  Cardinal  Gibbons  and  his  associates  in  the 
Episcopacy  to  counsel  and  warn  their  leaders,  the  Knights  may 
long  fill  an  important  place  in  our  social  economy,  and  stand  as  a 
bulwark  against  the  encroachments  of  combined  capital  on  the 
rights  of  the  workingman. 

We  need  such  organizations,  when  well-principled  and  wisely 
directed,  in  our  great  and  free  country.  But  what  we  need  more 
— and  what  must  be  the  joint  creation  of  the  clergy,  the  capitalists, 
and  the  workingmen  themselves — are  such  societies,  founded  on 
Christian  charity,  as  those  existing  in  France  and  Belgium,  and 
which  we  have  only  glanced  at  in  the  preceding  pages. 

There  is  among  American  employers  too  much  of  inborn  gen- 
erosity, love  of  justice,  and  appreciation  of  the  rights  of  manhood, 
not  to  make  us  hope  for  prompt  cooperation  from  them  when 
rightly  appealed  to. 

We  want  combined  action  in  doing  the  work  of  God  and  the 
brotherhood.     The  time  needs  it,  and  the  country  is  ripe  for  it. 




JEROME    SAVONAROLA   was   born   at   Ferrara   in    1452. 
J       Naturally  of  a  grave  disposition,  he  soon  manifested  an  en- 
thusiastic piety,  and  at  the  age  of  twenty-three  he  donned  the 
habit  of  a  Friar-Preacher  at  Bologna.     His  strict  observance  of 
the  rule,  his  great  talents,  and,  not  least  of  all,  his  remarkably 
striking  presence,  drew  upon  him  the  admiration  of  the  multitude; 
so  that  his  superior  determined  to  utilize  his  influence  in  the  pulpit! 
His  first  attempt  at  preaching,  however,  was  not  a  success.     It 
was  made  in   1482,  in  the  church  of  St.  Lawrence,  in  Florence; 
and  when  he  had  finished,  says  Burlamachi,  one  of  his  most  zeal- 
ous admirers,  he  found  that  only  twenty  persons  had  remained.^ 
Both  he  and  his  audience  having  decided  that  he  was  no  orator, 
he  for  a  time  occupied  a  chair  of  philosophy,  but  soon  abandoned 
the  study  of  Aristotle  and  St.  Thomas  for  that  of  Scripture.     Now 
he  was  content,  for  his  contemplative  nature  fully  appreciated  the 
lofty  ideas  and  the  mysterious  and  figurative  style  of  the  divine 
books.     For  several  years  he  had  devoted  himself,  night  and  day, 
to  his  Biblical  studies,  when  he  was  again  unexpectedly  brought 
before  the  public.    It  was  the  celebrated  Pico  della  Mirandola  who 
was  the  means  of  pushing  the  retiring  student  into  publicity,  and  of 
causing  him  to  enter  upon  a  career  which  was  to  prove  his  destruc- 
tion.    This  great  scholar,  one  of  the  brightest  luminaries  of  his 
own  or  any  other  age,  had  heard  Savonarola  lecture  at  Reggio, 
and  had  been  so  impressed  by  his  eloquence  that  he  prevailed 
upon  Lorenzo  de  Medici  to  call  the  friar  to  Florence.     In  1489 
Savonarola  was  appointed  professor  of  Scripture  to  the  young 
religious  of  the  convent  of  St.  Mark,  and  as  his  oratorical  powers 
had  greatly  developed  since  his  failure  at  St.  Lawrence's,  he  soon 
acquired  a  great  reputation.     Before  long,  impelled  by  the  enthu- 
siasm   he  excited,  he  reappeared   in  the  pulpit;  and  voluptuous 
Florence  was  astonished  at  his   denunciations  of  her  vices  and  at 
the  threats  of  chastisement  which,  by  command  of  God,  he  said, 
he  poured  forth.     The  sermons  of  Savonarola,  as  we  have  them, 
are  not  from  his  own  hand ;  they  were  taken  down,  as  delivered, 
by  some  of  his  auditors.'    But  imperfect  as  they  are,  we  can  readily 
imagine  the  effect  they  must  have  produced.    "  His  eloquence  was 
not  that  which  comes  from  the  use  of  the  orator's  arts,  or  from  a 

^  Life  of  F.  Jerome  Savonarola,  Lucca,  1761,  p.  23, 
2  Tiraboschi:  b.  iii.,  c.  6. 

24  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

depth  of  reasoning,  or  from  an  emotion  agitating  the  orator's  self 
It  was  an  eloquence  which  seemed  to  despise  all  human  aids,  and 
which,  like  the  mystical  figures  of  Fra  Angelico,  looks  toward 
heaven  and  does  not  touch  the  earth.  .  .  .  Savonarola  is  like  no 
other  orator.  True  or  pretended,  he  is  a  prophet ;  he  has  the  visions, 
the  incoherence,  the  seizures,  the  figurative  language,  the  rashness 
of  one.  For  this  reason,  rather  than  by  means  of  his  talent,  great 
as  it  was,  he  captivated  the  multitude."^  Several  years  before  the 
Italian  expedition  of  Charles  VIII.,  Savonarola  had  predicted  to  his 
auditors  that  a  foreign  prince,  led  by  the  Lord,  would  become  mas- 
ter of  Italy  without  drawing  his  sword ;  and  when,  in  1494,  he 
heard  of  the  preparations  being  made  in  France,  he  quoted  the  pas- 
sage of  Genesis  which  threatens  the  deluge,  and  cried  out :  *'  Oh  ! 
ye  just,  enter  into  the  ark.  Behold,  the  cataracts  of  heaven  are 
opened ;  I  see  the  plains  inundated,  and  the  mountains  disappear- 
ing in  the  midst  of  the  waters.  Behold  the  day  of  the  Lord's  ven- 
geance ! "  His  predictions  were  universally  believed,  and  his  au- 
thority over  the  multitude  became  so  great  that  a  contemporary 
historian  says  that  posterity  will  find  it  just  as  difficult  to  believe 
as  he  finds  it  hard,  having  witnessed  these  events,  to  describe 
them.^  A  change  came  over  gay  and  voluptuous  Florence.  Vice 
of  every  kind  disappeared,  and  piety  became  so  general  that  Bur- 
lamachi  tells  us  that  the  days  of  the  primitive  Church  seemed  to 
have  returned.'^  Nor  was  the  eloquence  of  the  friar  restricted  to  a 
combat  with  vice  alone.  The  Renaissance  in  letters  and  art  had 
been  more  favorable  to  science  than  to  faith,  and  for  about  a 
century  an  almost  idolatrous  worship  had  been  extended  to  the 
works  of  Pagan  antiquity,  to  the  detriment  of  Scriptural  and  Patris- 
tic lore.  Paganism  had  so  far  corrupted  the  minds  of  men  that 
even  the  members  of  the  Roman  Academy  of  Pomponius  Laetus 
were  accused  of  thinking  that  the  Christian  faith  rested  on  light 
foundations.*  Art,  as  well  as  literature  and  true  science,  had  suf- 
fered from  this  revival  of  Pagan  sentiment.^  The  painter  and  the 
sculptor,  influenced  by  the  works  exhibited  in  the  Medici  gardens, 

1  Christophe  :  History  of  the  Papacy  in  the  i^th  Century,  v.  ii.,  b.  1 6.     Lyons,  1863. 

2  Nardi :  History  of  the  City  of  Florence,  b.  ii. 
8  I.oc.  cit,,  p.  86. 

*  Canensius:  Life  of  Paul  II.,  p.  78.     Tiraboschi :  v.  vi.,  p.  ii.,  b.  2. 

^  "  Pagan  ideas  again  flourish ;  the  books,  statues,  and  buildings  of  Paganism  are 
restored ;  modern  works  are  modeled  after  the  ancient,  to  the  sacrifice  of  originality 
and  of  naturalness ;  the  authority  of  a  philosopher  or  of  a  poet  is  weighed  against  that 
of  the  Scriptures  or  of  a  Father— professors  even  say,  *  Christ  teaches  thus,  Aristotle 
and  Plato  thus ;'  the  Platonic  sublimity  disappears  in  theosophical  delirium ;  only 
Pagan  virtues  are  praised,  and  the  names  of  Greeks  and  Romans  are  substituted  for 
those  received  at  baptism.  .  -.  .  Lorenzo  de  Medici  sings  sacred  hymns  to  please  his 
mother,  and  makes  obscene  jokes  to  gratify  his  boon  companions."  Cantii:  Heretics 
of  Italy ^  Discourse  XI. 

Savonarola.  2  e 

had  adopted  naturalism  as  a  system,  and,  banishing  the  ideal,  pro- 
duced merely  the  expression  of  human  beauty— decency  and 
modesty  were  ignored,  and  Savonarola  indignantly  asked  the 
artists  why  they  put  their  mistresses  upon  the  altars,  and  why  they 
pictured  the  Blessed  Virgin  like  a  courtesan.^  All  this  was 
changed  by  the  Dominican  reformer.  On  two  different  occasions 
the  Florentines  made  immense  bonfires,  and  performed  a  real  and 
meritorious  auto-da-fe,  by  throwing  into  the  flames  their  books  on 
impure  love,  their  lascivious  pictures  and  statues,  while  joyous 
strains  of  music  floated  over  the  great  square  of  the  cathedral. 

From  the  very  commencement  of  his  preaching  Savonarola  had 
proclaimed  the  necessity  of  purifying  the  sanctuary;  but  at  first, 
in  this  matter,  he  restrained  his  usual  impetuosity,  and  confined 
himself  to  declamations  against  the  laxity,  then  but  too  prevalent, 
of  ecclesiastical  discipline.  But  his  growing  popularity  soon 
affected  his  judgment  and  banished  his  reserve.  From  the  acces- 
sion of  Alexander  VI.  to  the  Papacy,  he  bitterly  inveighed  against 
that  Pontiff,  and  consequently  his  auditors  were  divided  into  two 
factions.  His  partisans  were  known  ?iS  frateschi,  or  "friarites,"  and 
sometimes  as  piangoni,  or  "  weepers,"  while  those  who,  either  in 
good  or  bad  faith,  trembled  lest  his  denunciation  would  injure  both 
Church  and  state,  were  called  by  his  followers  tepidi,  or  ""  luke- 
warm," and  arrabiaii,  or  ^*  madmen."  ^  To  neutralize  the  influence 
of  the  Dominican,  the  arrabiati  made  use  of  the  Augustinian, 
Mariano  da  Gennazzano,  a  friend  of  the  Medici,  and  a  man  esteemed 
as  much  for  his  austere  morals  as  for,  his  talents,'  and  of  whom 
Savonarola  himself  said  that  ''  if  he  had  the  eloquence  of  Mariano, 
he  would  be  the  first  of  orators."*  But  the  impassioned  genius  of 
the  agitator  still  held  the  people  entranced.  A  Franciscan  named 
Dominic  de  Ponzo  was  then  put  forward  to  stem  the  torrent,  but 
the  Grand  Council,  a  legislative  body  instituted  after  Savonarola 
had  procured  the  expulsion  of  Piero  de  Medici,  prohibited  his 
preaching.  The  Dominican  had  now  become  the  real  ruler  of 
Florence,  and  the  devotion  of  the  citizens  to  their  liberator  took 
the  form  of  insanity.  Nerli  tells  us  that  they  often  interrupted 
their  prayers  to  rush  from  the  churches,  and  to  the  cry  of"  Viva 
Crista^'  they  would  dance  in  circles,  formed  of  friars  and  laymen, 
placed  alternately.^  But  the  arrabiati  did  not  lose  courage,  and 
the  war  of  factions  became  so  general  that  the  very  children  took 

1  Sermon  for  the  Saturday  before  2d  Sunday  of  Lent. 

2  Nerli :   Com??ientarJes  on  the  Civil  Affairs  of  Florence,  p.  68. 

3  Poliziano  and  Pontano  greatly  laud  him  as  a  preacher. 
*  Tiraboschi :  v.  6,  b,  3. 

6  Lfic.  cit.y  b.  iv.,  p.  75. 

26  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

part  in  it,  and  showed  their  zeal  by  pelting  each  other  with  stones.^ 
The  opponents  of  Savonarola,  most  of  them  partisans  of  the  exiled 
Piero  de  Medici,  now  took  the  more  efficacious  means  of  discred- 
iting their  enemy  by  denouncing  him  to  the  Pope.  Some  of  his 
most  bitter  sermons  were  sent  to  Rome,  and  the  Augustinian, 
Mariano,  who  had  been  exiled  from  Florentine  territory,  preached 
before  the  Pontiff  and  the  Sacred  College  a  most  fiery  sermon,  in 
which  he  cried  out:  "  Burn,  Holy  Father,  burn  this  instrument  of 
the  devil  ;  burn,  I  tell  you,  this  scandal  of  the  whole  Church."  ^ 
At  first.  Pope  Alexander  contented  himself  with  charging  Cardinal 
Caraffa,  the  protector  of  the  Dominican  order,  to  check  the  indis- 
cretions of  the  friar;  but  since  the  cardinal,  himself  a  reformer,  took 
no  active  measures,  we  must  suppose  that  the  Pontiff  decided  to 
let  the  matter  rest. 

At  this  time  the  worst  accusation  against  Savonarola  was  that 
of  being  more  of  a  tribune,  yea,  of  a  demagogue,  than  of  an  eccle- 
siastic and  a  friar.  The  charge  of  heresy,  made  by  the  arrabiati, 
was  unfounded ;  in  the  heat  of  improvisation  he  may  have  been, 
and  doubtless  was,  inexact  in  his  expressions,  but  he  had  deliber- 
ately attacked  no  Catholic  teaching.  As  for  his  political  notions, 
he  was  a  thorough  republican,  and  carried  his  principles  to  their 
utmost  logical  conclusions ;  he  was  a  firm  advocate  of  universal 
suffrage.  All,  said  he,  are  interested  in  the  State ;  all,  therefore, 
should  have  a  voice  in  the  government.^  Hence  his  institution  of 
the  Consiglio  Grande  of  a  thousand  members,  elected  by  the  votes 
of  all  the  citizens,  and  that  of  the  Consiglio  degli  Scelti(Co\xvvz\\  of  the 
Select),  formed  of  eighty  persons  of  over  forty  years  of  age,  chosen 
by  the  former.  Savonarola  no  longer  inhabited  the  cell  of  a  friar ; 
that  modest  apartment  had  been  turned  into  a  hall  of  audience  and 
of  political  wrangling.  Florence  soon  found  that  she  had  ex- 
changed the  despotism  of  the  Medici  for  that  of  the  friar,  for  despite 
his  liberal  institutions,  the  reformer  allowed  no  political  measure 
to  be  taken  without  his  permission.  Marino  Sanuto,  a  Venetian 
chronicler,  tells  us  that  "  a  stone  could  not  be  moved  without  his 
consent.  .  .  .  He  was  lord  and  governor  of  Florence."*  It  is 
worthy  of  note  that  Machiavelli,  though  not  a  partisan  of  Savona- 
rola, says,  in  his  Discourses,  that  so  great  a  man  must  be  treated 
with  respect,  and  he  tells  Leo  X.  that  the  Florentine  state  can  be 
firmly  re-established  only  by  the  restoration  of  the  friar's  Consiglio 
Grande.  Guicciardini,  whose  History  was  written  with  a  different 
animus  from  that  pervading  his  unedited  works,  allows,  in  these 

1  Ibid.,  p.  74. 

2  Burlamachi:  p.  34.     Nardi :  b.  ii.,  p.  35. 
8  Nardi:  b.  i,  p.  18. 

*  Chronicles  of  Fenice.—Burchard  :  Diary. 

Savonarola,  27 


latter,  his  conscience  to  speak ;  and  in  his  book  on  the  Govt 
ment  of  Florence  he  admits :  "  We  owe  much  to  this  friar,  who, 
without  shedding  a  drop  of  blood,  knew  how  to  accomphsh  what 
otherwise  would  have  cost  much  blood  and  disorder.  Before  him 
Florence  had  been  governed  by  a  restricted  circle  of  ottimati,  and 
then  she  had  fallen  into  all  the  excesses  of  popular  rule,  which 
would  have  produced  anarchy.  He  alone,  from  the  beginning, 
knew  how  to  be  liberal  without  loosening  the  reins."  But  the 
reader  will  be  pleased  to  hear  the  reformer  himself  on  this  subject. 
In  the  Abridgment  of  his  Revelations,  published  by  Bzovius,  he 
says  to  the  Florentines :  "  After  examining  with  care  the  state  of 
your  city,  and  the  coming  revolutions  in  its  form  of  government 
which  would  seem  inevitable,  I  have  persuaded  myself  that  the 
great  change  will  not  be  effected  without  danger  or  without  even 
the  effusion  of  blood,  unless  Divine  Providence  comes  to  your  aid 
out  of  consideration  for  the  justice  and  piety  of  the  citizens  who 
are  worthy.  In  this  spirit,  and  relying  on  this  hope,  I  earnestly 
besought  the  people  to  be  reconciled  to  the  Lord,  and  to  merit 
His  mercy  by  renewed  fervor  and  sincere  repentance.  I  com- 
menced my  discourses  on  this  point,  on  St.  Matthew's  Day,  Sept. 
25,  1494.  From  that  time  the  citizens  appeared  so  zealous  in  the 
good  works  I  had  prescribed,  that  it  pleased  God  to  give  tangible 
proof  of  His  reconciliation  with  us ;  in  fact,  in  the  month  of  No- 
vember, by  a  miracle  of  heaven's  protection,  you  witnessed  the 
desired  change,  and  without  bloodshed  or  other  scandal.  Now, 
since  there  was  a  question  of  proposing  to  you  a  new  form  of  gov- 
ernment, I  assembled  all  the  magistrates  and  notables  of  the  city 
in  the  cathedral  of  Florence,  excluding  only  those  whose  sex  or  con- 
dition prohibited  their  being  called.  .  .  .  Having  discoursed  for  some 
time  on  what  had  been  written  by  philosophers,  statesmen,  and  the 
most  able  theologians  touching  the  best  way  of  governing  a  state,  I 
explained  my  opinion  as  to  the  form  most  suitable  to  the  genius  and 
profit  of  the  Florentines.  In  the  following  discourses  I  proposed 
four  articles,  the  necessity  of  which  was  admitted :  I.  Religion 
should  be  the  basis  and  the  first  rampart  of  our  government.  II.  All 
private  interests  should  yield  to  the  public  good.  III.  By  forgetting 
all  past  injuries  and  quarrels  there  would  ensue  a  getieral  and  sin- 
cere peace,  and  in  no  way  should  any  trouble  accrue  to  those  who 
hitherto  administered  the  affairs  of  the  state.  And  I  added  that 
there  should  always  remain  liberty  of  appeal  from  the  tribunal  of 
the  six  judges,  so  that  no  private  person  could  ever  usurp  the  sov- 
ereign authority.  It  was  also  my  idea  to  establish  a  Great  Coun- 
cil, composed  of  the  wisest  and  most  illustrious  citizens,  after  the 
model  of  the  Council  of  Venice  ;  and  that  thereafter  all  offices,  etc., 
should  be  conferred  in  the  name  of  the  people  of  Florence,  and 

28  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

not  in  the  name  of  any  single  person,  who  might  thus  take  occa- 
sion to  aspire  to  tyranny.  I  made  no  difficulty  of  assuring  the 
assembly  that  all  I  had  proposed  was  conformable  to  God's  law 
and  to  His  will.  ...  It  was  not  only  because  of  my  peculiar  knowl- 
edge of  the  Divine  Will,  but  because  of  many  conclusions  of  my 
reason,  that  I  undertook  to  convince  you  of  the  advantages  of  this 
new  form  of  government,  the  best  fitted  for  your  needs,  the  most 
favorable  to  liberty,  and  also  the  most  apt  to  give  great  glory  to 
your  republic,  which  will  thereby  become  more  flourishing,  both 
in  the  spiritual  and  in  the  temporal  order." 

Great  numbers,  incited,  of  course,  by  the  partisans  of  the  exiled 
Medici,  soon  revolted  against  the  dictatorship  imposed  upon  the 
city,  and  allied  themselves  with  those  who  opposed  the  friar  on 
religious  grounds.  In  1494  the  superiors  of  the  Dominicans  deemed 
it  prudent  to  forbid  Savonarola  to  preach  the  Lenten  course,  al- 
though a  Brief  of  Pope  Alexander  permitted  him  to  give  it.  His 
followers  then  appealed  to  the  Pontiff,  and  then  Alexander,  who  is 
said  to  have  been  Savonarola's  foe  from  the  beginning,  quashed 
the  prohibition.  In  fact,  during  the  early  troubles  of  the  Domi- 
nican, Alexander  VI.  paid  but  little  attention  to  him  ;  when  he 
thought  of  him  at  all,  it  was  rather  with  admiration.  He  had  even 
conceived  the  idea,  says  Burlamachi,  of  enrolling  the  friar  in  the 
i  Sacred  College.  But  now  Alexander,  although  not  prohibiting 
Savonarola  from  preaching,  summoned  him  to  Rome  to  explain 
his  conduct.  The  reply  was  an  allegation  of  infirmity  and  the 
need  that  Florence  had  of  his  presence.  Then  the  Pontiff  threat- 
ened the  friar  with  the  censures  of  the  Church,  and  menaced  the 
city  of  Florence  with  an  interdict.  The  Florentine  merchants,  fear- 
ing the  results  of  this  measure,  and  many  of  the  cardinals,  who 
were  rather  favorable  to  the  agitator,  prevailed  upon  Alexander 
to  withdraw  his  citation.  However,  the  Pontiff  gave  an  eloquent 
rebuke  to  his  stubborn  son,  by  leaving  it  to  his  own  conscience 
whether  or  not  he  would  continue  to  preach.  This  moderation 
seems  to  have  somewhat  affected  Savonarola,  for  he  withdrew  from 
the  pulpit,  substituting,  however,  the  friar  Dominic  of  Pescia,  also 
a  Dominican,  and  a  man  of  reputed  holiness,  who  was  far  less  fiery 
than  himself. 

The  enemies  of  the  friar  regarded  this  retreat  from  the  pulpit  as 
a  triumph  for  themselves;  but  when,  in  October,  1495,  he  broke 
his  silence,  they  suffered  from  one  of  his  most  virulent  tirades. 
Heaven,  he  said,  would  take  condign  vengeance  upon  those  who 
had  presumed  to  interfere  with  its  work,  namely,  the  establishment 
of  popular  government.  To  this  denunciation  he  added  new  decla- 
mations on  the  need  of  reform  in  the  Church.  Pope  Alexander 
now  ordered  the  vicar-general  of  the  Dominicans  at  Bologna  to 


examine  into  the  charges  against  his  subject,  and  to  punish  him 
according  to  the  rules  of  the  Order,  if  he  were  found  guilty.  Dur- 
ing the  trial  the  friar  was  not  to  preach ;  but,  in  spite  of  this  pro- 
hibition, Savonarola  continued  in  the  pulpit.  The  Pontiff  now  de- 
manded that  the  republic  should  place  the  agitator  in  his  hands, 
and  as  his  request  was  not  heeded,  he  launched  an  excommunica- 
tion against  him.^  This  sentence  was  read  in  six  churches  of 
Florence  on  June  1 8th,  1497.  At  first  Savonarola  seemed  in- 
clined to  submit.  He  withdrew  to  his  cell,  admitted  no  visitors, 
and  wrote  a  humble  letter  to  the  Pope.  Alexander's  answer  was 
truly  paternal.  Among  other  encouraging  remarks,  he  says  :  "  In 
spite  of  facts,  we  begin  to  believe  that  you  have  not  spoken  in 
malice,  but  rather  in  simplicity,  and  out  of  zeal  for  the  vineyard  of 
the  Lord."  He  concluded  with  a  promise  that  if  the  friar  would 
abstain  from  preaching,  and  come  to  Rome,  he  would  annul  the 
censures  pronounced.  To  this  letter  Savonarola  replied,  demand- 
ing to  be  judged  at  Florence.  However,  he,  for  some  time,  re- 
spected the  censures,  and  abstained  from  preaching.  But,  after 
six  months,  being  asked  by  the  magistrates,  who  were  dXX  frateschi^ 
to  reappear  in  the  pulpit,  and  reconvert  the  people,  who,  in  the 
interval  of  his  silence,  had  resumed  their  gayeties,  he  yielded  to 
the  temptation,  and  boldly  defied  his  excommunication.  On  Christ- 
mas he  celebrated  the  customary  three  Masses  of  that  festival,  gave 
the  Eucharist  to  his  religious,  and,  after  a  solemn  procession  around 
his  convent,^  announced  that  he  would  at  once  resume  his  preach- 
ing in  the  cathedral.  When  this  new  departure  was  made  public, 
the  vicar-general,  in  the  absence  of  Rinaldo  Orsini,  Archbishop  of 
Florence,  convoked  the  Chapter  of  the  cathedral,  and  a  prohibition 
to  assist  at  the  proposed  sermons  was  issued  to  all  the  clergy ;  the 
parish-priests  were  ordered  to  inform  the  faithful  that,  owing  to 
the  censures  hanging  over  Savonarola,  any  one  who  attended  his 
discourses  would  incur  the  same  penalties.  In  spite  of  this  action 
of  the  Chapter,  the  friar  announced  that  he  would  follow  the  inspi- 
ration of  God.^ 

From  this  moment  Savonarola  was  at  a  disadvantage.     People 
felt,  and  he  must  have  felt,  that  his  rebellion  destroyed  the  influ- 

1  Alexander  VI.  said  to  Bonsi,  envoy  of  Florence  :  "  I  have  read  the  sermons  of 
your  friar,  and  have  talked  with  those  who  have  heard  them.  He  dares  to  say  that 
the  Pope  is  a  broken  sword  ;  that  he  who  believes  in  excommunication  is  a  heretic ; 
that  he  himself,  sooner  than  ask  for  absolution,  will  go  to  hell.  He  has  been  excommu- 
nicated,  not  because  of  false  insinuations,  nor  at  anyone's  instigation,  but  for  his  diso- 
bedience to  our  command  that  he  should  enter  the  new  Tusco-Roman  congregation. 
W^e  do  not  condemn  him  because  of  his  good  works  ;  but  we  insist  that  he  ask  pardon 
for  his  petulant  arrogance,  and  we  will  gladly  accord  him  absolution  when  he  humbles 
himself  at  our  feet." 

2  For  some  time  Savonarola  had  been  prior  of  the  Convent  of  St.  Mark. 
^  Nardi,  b.  ii.,  p.  42. 

30  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

ence,  by  weakening  the  authority,  of  his  words.  To  obviate  this 
difficulty  he  now  attacked  the  validity  of  his  excommunication, 
declaring,  first,  that  the  censures  of  a  wicked  Pope  are  of  no  weight ; 
second,  that  Alexander  had  excommunicated  him  without  reason  ; 
third,  that  the  censures  were  pronounced  against  the  "  sower  of 
tares,"  and  he  was  not  such  a  one.^  The  arguments  with  which  he 
defended  these  propositions  were  of  the  weakest  kind,  and  to  re- 
assure his  partisans,  he,  one  day,  had  recourse  to  a  device  which 
was  terribly  impressive.  With  the  Holy  Eucharist  in  his  hand, 
he  called  upon  God  to  consume  him  with  fire  from  heaven  if  he 
was  deceiving  the  people,  and  if  the  Pope's  censure,  in  his  case, 
was  valid.  At  this  time,  says  Christophe,  "  his  talent  certainly  ap- 
pears great,  but  we  can  divine  that  he  is  not  at  ease,  not  sure  of 
himself.  Savonarola  perceives,  in  the  minds  of  his  hearers,  diffi- 
culties which  disquiet  them,  and  to  which  he  is  compelled  to  re- 
spond. He  invents  trivial  similes  that  he  may  excite  their  laugh- 
ter ;  he  encumbers  himself  with  suppositions  ;  he  advances  haz- 
ardous and  equivocal  principles,  the  consequences  of  which  he 
would  certainly  repudiate."  In  fact,  from  the  day  that  Savonarola 
openly  defied  the  Holy  See,  his  waning  eloquence  and  deficient 
logic  proved  that  he  well  realized  his  false  position. 

When  the  news  of  the  friar's  daring  rebellion  reached  Rome, 
Pope  Alexander  threatened  serious  measures  against  Florence  if 
the  delinquent  were  not  sent  to  the  Eternal  City.  The  republic 
partially  yielded.  Savonarola  was  commanded  to  keep  silent,  but 
his  disciple.  Friar  Dominic  of  Pescia,  continued  to  preach  in  the 
strain  of  the  master,  and  his  rashness  precipitated  the  ruin  of  both. 
One  day  a  Franciscan  friar,  named  Francis  of  Puglia,  while  preach- 
ing in  the  church  of  Santa  Croce,  declared  that  Friar  Jerome  was 
an  impostor,  adding  that  he  was  ready  to  try  the  "  ordeal  by  fire  " 
with  the  said  Jerome.  At  that  moment  Friar  Dominic  was  hold- 
ing forth  in  the  church  of  St.  Lawrence,  and  the  news  of  the  Fran- 
ciscan's challenge  was  immediately  carried  to  him.  He  at  once 
informed  his  hearers,  and  accepted  the  defiance.  When  Friar 
Francis  found  himself  called  upon  to  make  good  his  boasting  offer, 
he  lost  courage,  and  tried  to  escape  by  pleading  that  he  had  chal- 
lenged Savonarola,  not  Dominic.  This  incident  was  painful  to 
Savonarola,  but  how  could  he  disavow  his  companion  when  he 
himself  had  often  declared  that  if  his  arguments  did  not  produce 
conviction  of  the  truth  of  his  teaching,  he  was  ready  to  invoke  the 
supernatural  in  its  defence  ?  He  accepted  the  challenge,  and  for 
himself,  but  insisted  that  a  Papal  legate  and  all  the  foreign  ambas- 
sador^ shoidd^e^r^^  ordeal ;  furthermore,  he  demanded 

1  Sermon  for  last  Sunday  of  Lent. 
■^  Nardi:  b,  ii.,  p.  44. 

Savonarola.  ^ 

that  if  he  came  unharmed  out  of  the  fire,  the  Church  should  at 
once  be  reformed.  Friar  Francis  refused  these  conditions,  but  the 
factions  had  entered  into  the  spirit  of  the  thing,  and  the  mob  would 
not  miss  the  show.  The  impetuous  Dominic,  unHke  the  timid 
Francis,  was  panting  for  the  terrible  trial,  and  there  were  many 
Franciscans  more  brave,  or  more  confident,  than  their  brother. 
Finally,  the  affair  was  laid  before  the  magistrates,  and  they  decided 
that  the  ordeal  should  be  held.  As  champions  the  magistrates 
designated,  on  the  part  of  Savonarola,  Friar  Dominic,  and  on  the 
part  of  the  Franciscan  challenger,  a  lay-brother  named  Julian  Ron- 
dinelli.  Certain  propositions,  the  truth  or  falsity  of  which  was  to 
be  established,  in  the  opinion  of  many,  by  this  curious  means,  were 
drawn  up  by  Dominic.  They  were  :  "  The  Church  needs  reforma- 
tion. She  will  be  chastised.  She  will  be  renovated.  Florence 
will  be  punished,  but  she  will  afterwards  prosper.  The  infidels 
will  be  converted.  All  these  things  will  soon  happen.  The  ex- 
communication of  Savonarola  is  null."  The  magistrates  then  ap- 
pointed ten  citizens,  five  for  each  party,  as  a  commission  to  settle 
any  differences  that  might  arise,  and  all  was  ready  for  that  trial, 
the  worth  of  which  we  doubt,  but  which,  in  those  days,  commanded 
the  confidence  of  the  people.^  Previous  to  the  experiment,  how- 
ever, the  magistrates  sent  messengers  to  Rome  to  obtain  the  Pon- 
tiff's consent  to  the  undertaking.  A  consistory  was  held,  and  the 
authorization  was  refused;  Alexander  simply  wrote  to  the  Fran- 
ciscans, praising  their  devotion  to  the  Holy  See,  and  encouraging 
them  to  continue  in  their  combat  against  error.-^ 

On  April  7th,  1498,  i  1  the  centre  of  the  Square  of  the  Magis- 
tracy (in  modern  times,  Square  of  the  Grand   Duke),  was  to  be 

1  The  Church  never  authorized  or  approved  of  ordeals,  but,  they  being  recognized 
in  the  laws  of  the  barbarians,  she  was  obliged  to  tolerate  them.  The  prejudices  of 
humanity  are  not  easily  eradicated  ;  witness  the  number  of  superstitions  in  our  own 
day,  and  among  the  most  cultivated.  As  far  back  as  the  ninth  century  Agobard,  arch- 
bishop of  Lyons,  wrote  against  the  damnable  opinion  that  God  interfered  in  the  or- 
deals ;  in  the  eleventh,  Ivo  of  Chartres  supports  his  condemnation  of  them  by  a  letter 
of  Pope  Stephen  V.  to  the  bishop  of  Mayence.  Popes  Celestine  III.,  Innocent  III. 
and  Honorius  III.  condemned  them,  as  did  also  the  Fourth  Council  of  Lateran.  The 
scholastic  theologians  teach  that  they  are  injurious  to  God,  and  favorable  to  lies.  As 
for  the  question,  whether  or  not  there  was  ever  anything  of  the  supernatural  in  the 
frequent  success  of  these  ordeals,  see  an  excellent  dissertation  in  the  Memoirs  of  the 
Academy  of  Inscriptions,  v.  24. 

'^  In  reference  to  this  request  of  the  magistrates  of  Florence,  the  Abb6  Chriitophe 
says  that  he  is  astonished  to  find  that  Carle,  in  his  History  of  Friar  Jerome  Savona- 
rola (Paris,  1848),  cites  the  letter  of  Alexander  VI.  as  an  approbation  of  the  proposed 
ordeal.  "  If  we  rightly  understand  the  words  of  the  Pontiff,"  adds  Christophe,  "  they 
do  not  contradict  the  testimony  of  the  historian  [Miscellanies  oi  Baluze,  v.  iv.,  Burla- 
machi,  p.  132),  who  affirms  that  the  decision  of  the  consistory  was  averse  to  the  au- 
thorization. They  simply  contain  a  eulogy  on  thQ  feJ'vor,  zeal,  devotion  displayed  by 
the  Franciscans  in  their  struggle  with  Savonarola." 

32  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

seen  an  immense  scaffolding,  paved  with  bricks,  and  covered  with 
combustible  material.  Two  tribunes  arose  before  it,  destined  to 
be  occupied  by  the  magistrates  and  by  the  friars  of  the  two  Or- 
ders. The  square  was  filled  with  anxious  spectators,  the  house- 
tops were  crowded.  At  the  appointed  hour  Rondinelli,  at  the 
head  of  a  long  file  of  Franciscans,  and  Dominic  of  Pescia,  flanked 
by  Savonarola,  and  followed  by  a  procession  of  Dopiinicans,  en- 
tered the  square,  and  took  their  places.  It  was  observed  that 
Savonarola  carried  a  silver  pyx,  containing  the  Holy  Eucharist. 
Rondinelli  advanced  to  the  magistrates,  and  cried  out :  "  Behold 
me  ready  for  the  ordeal.  Sinner  that  I  am,  I  know  the  flames  will 
consume  me.  But  let  not  Friar  Dominic,  therefore,  boast  of  vic- 
tory ;  he  must  take  his  turn  in  the  fire.  If  he  comes  out  unharmed 
let  him  be  proclaimed  the  conqueror  ;  otherwise,  no."  ^  The  judges 
replied  that  his  demand  would  be  granted.  Then  ensued  a  curious 
scene.  The  referees  feared  that  the  champions  might  have  con- 
cealed some  charms  under  their  robes,  and  ordered  them  to  change 
them  for  others  handed  to  them.  Rondinelli  was  perfectly  willing, 
but  at  first  Dominic  hesitated.  "  Never  mind,"  cried  the  Francis- 
can, "  his  robe  will  burn  with  his  body."  Then  the  Dominican 
changed  his  garments,  but  retained  a  crucifix.  When  he  was 
ordered  to  lay  it  down,  Rondinelli  said  :  "  Let  him  keep  it — it  is  of 
wood,  and  will  burn  with  the  rest."  Then  Savonarola  handed  the 
Holy  Eucharist  to  Dominic.  But  the  crowd,  believing  that  the 
flames  would,  perforce,  respect  the  Blessed  Sacrament,  declared 
that  if  the  Dominican  were  allowed  to  carry  it,  the  trial  would  not 
be  fair.*  Savonarola  persisted,  and  threatened  to  abandon  the 
ordeal.  An  endless  dispute  ensued,  and  the  promised  spectacle 
vanished  in  ridicule. 

This  fiasco  was  the  signal  for  the  fall  of  Savonarola,  for  one  can- 
not trifle  with  the  mob.  Had  he  not  been  protected  by  the  Holy 
Eucharist,  the  agitator  would  not  have  regained  his  convent  in 
safety.  In  vain  he  mounted  the  pulpit  to  pacify  the  crowd ;  his 
eloquence  was  not  heeded,  for  all  now  felt  that  Savonarola  was  but 
an  ordinary  mortal.  The  day  after  was  Palm  Sunday,  and,  while 
one  of  the  Dominicans  was  preaching  in  the  cathedral,  a  crowd  of 
young  men  burst  upon  the  congregation,  a  voice  cried  :  "  To  St. 
Mark's !  "  and  in  a  few  moments  the  convent  was  attacked.  The 
magistrates,  tired  of  him  who  had  made  them,  more  than  winked 
at  the  outbreak,  and  ordered  the  i^\N  laymen  who  had  rushed  to 
defend  the  Dominicans,  out  of  the  building.  The  doors  were 
burnt  away,  and  the  mob  rushed  in  search  of  its  prey.    Savonarola 

1  Nardi,  b,  ii.,  p.  48 ;  Burlamachi,  p.  140 ;  Anonymous  Life  of  F.  Jerome  Sa- 
vonarola (Geneva,  1781),  c.  26. 

2  Nardi,  b.  ii.,  p.  45  ;  Nerli,  p.  78 ;  Anonymous  author,  suj>ra,  pp.  loi,  102. 

Savonarola,  ^^ 

was  found  in  prayer  before  the  Blessed  Sacrament,  in  company 
with  the  imprudent  Dominic  of  Pescia.  He  was  saved  from  the 
crowd  by  some  municipal  commissioners,  and,  together  with  Domi- 
nic, lodged  in  prison  ;  a  few  hours  afterwards  Friar  Sylvester  Ma- 
ruffii  was  also  arrested. 

Information  of  Savonarola's  imprisonment  was  immediately  sent 
to  Pope  Alexander,  and  he  ordered  the  magistrates  to  send  the 
friar  to  Rome.  Had  the  command  been  heeded,  the  unfortunate 
man  would,  doubtless,  have  been  confined,  perhaps  even  for  life, 
but  the  catastrophe  would  have  been  averted.  The  magistrates 
now  appointed  a  commission  of  six  citizens  and  two  canons  (these 
latter  as  Papal  commissaries)  for  the  trial  of  the  three  Dominicans; 
nearly  all  were  declared  adversaries  of  the  accused.  The  trial 
lasted  from  the  9th  to  the  19th  of  April.  During  the  first  inter- 
rogatories Savonarola  was  firm  and  collected,  but  when,  in  accord- 
ance with  the  detestable  and  foolish  custom  of  the  time,  he  was  put 
to  "  the  question,"  as  the  torture  was  called,  he  quite  naturally 
weakened.^  "  Here,"  says  Christophe,  "  we  experience  a  painful 
uncertainty.  What  confidence  are  we  to  place  in  the  avowals 
made  by  the  accused?  Although  the  Acts  of  the  trial  are 
printed  with  the  title,  Authentic  Copy  of  the  Trial  of  Jerome  Savona- 
rola^ and  although  the  signature  of  the  friar  is  found  at  the  end, 
there  are  strong  presumptions  against  the  value  of  the  admissions 
they  contain.  Firstly,  the  composition  of  the  tribunal,  the  pre- 
amble of  the  interrogatory,  the  testimony  of  historians, — all  prove 
that  the  proceedings  were  not  conducted  with  the  calm  impar- 
tiality of  justice.  Secondly,  it  is  certain  that  Savonarola  more  than 
once  retracted,  and  showed  much  vacillation,  during  the  course  of 
his  interrogatory ;  that  he  frequently  declared,  in  presence  of 
the  Papal  commissioners,  that  what  he  had  said  and  predicted 
was  the  simple  truth,  and  that  his  own  contradictions  had  been 
extorted  by  the  fear  of  torture ;  that  he  acknowledged  that  tor- 
ture would  force  him  to  admit  whatever  his  enemies  might  wish, 
because  he  knew  himself  to  be  unable  to  support  such  pain. 
Hence  the  Pontifical  representatives  were  much  embarrassed. 
Finally,  the  commission  has  been  accused  of  having  falsified 
the  depositions  of  Savonarola,  they  having  realized  the  impos- 
sibility of  obtaining  real  facts  sufficiently  serious,  and  it  is  said 
that  a  notary,  called  Ser  Ceccone,  aided  in  this  odious  stratagem. 
It  is  true  that  it  is  an  apologist  of  Savonarola  who  asserts  this,'  and 
that  we  should  mistrust  the  testimony  of  those  w^ho  trembled  before 

1  The  characteristic  sneer  of  Roscoe  that  the  torture  is  the  "  last  reason  of  theologi- 
ans "  is  uncalled  for,  for  in  what  civil  tribunal,  down  to  the  last  century,  and  in  part 
of  that,  was  it  not  used  ? 

^  Burlamachi :  pp.  155-160. 
VOL.  XIV. — 3 

34  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

the  visions  of  the  friar;  but  we  find  the  same  accusation,  formu- 
lated, with  no  less  directness,  in  several  contemporary  historians  who 
had  not  the  same  interest  as  Burlamachi  in  attacking  the  equity  of 
the  commission."  In  fact,  Nardi  asserts  (b.  ii.  p.  47)  that  "  at  the 
time,  and  afterwards,  there  was  much  doubt  as  to  the  truth  and 
quality  of  the  proceedings,"  and,  that  he  himself  may  not  be  ac- 
cused of  hiding  the  truth,  he  narrates  the  following  anecdote  :  "A 
noble  citizen,  who  had  been  one  of  the  examiners  of  the  said  friars, 
and  who  had  been  chosen  because  of  his  enmity  to  them,  was  met 
by  me  in  his  villa ;  and  being  questioned  by  me,  with  deliberate 
intention,  concerning  the  truth  of  the  said  proceedings,  he  ingenu- 
ously replied,  in  the  presence  of  his  wife,  that  it  was  true  that  in 
the  report  of  Friar  Jerome's  trial  some  things  had  been  omitted 
and  some  things  added."  ^ 

When  the  examination  had  come  to  an  end,  the  magistrates 
deliberated  as  to  the  sentence  to  be  passed  upon  the  unfortunate 
religious.  A  few  wished  to  refer  the  matter  to  the  Pontiff,  as  the 
accused  were  ecclesiastics,  and  besides,  they  were  leniently  dis- 
posed, and  thought  that  the  friars'  only  chance  of  escaping  the 
death  penalty  lay  in  their  being  placed  in  Alexander's  hands.  But 
the  majority  insisted  that  the  culprits  could  not  be  accorded  any 
ecclesiastical  immunity,  as  they  were  excommunicated.  The  party 
of  severity  carried  the  day,  and  Pope  Alexander  was  requested  to 
appoint  commissioners  to  preside  at  the  sentence  and  its  execu- 
tion. The  Pontiff  commissioned  Joachim  Turriani,  the  general  of 
the  Dominicans,  and  Francis  Ramolina.  an  auditor  of  the  governor 
of  Rome,  and  after  some  interrogatories  they  ratified  the  proceed- 
ings, and  the  friars  were  declared  guilty  of  schism,  heresy,  perse- 
cution of  the  Church,  and  seduction  of  the  people.  They  were 
sentenced  to  be  burned  at  the  stake.  On  May  23d  Florence  wit- 
nessed the  last  act  of  this  terrible  drama.  In  the  square  of  the 
Grand  Duke,  where  two  months  before  Savonarola  had  seen  his 
credit  destroyed,  another  apparatus  was  now  arranged  for  his 
death.  Early  in  the  morning  the  three  friars  went  to  confession, 
received  Holy  Communion  with  every  manifestation  of  a  sincere 
piety,  and  marched  out  to  their  last  earthly  suffering.  Arrived  in 
the  square,  they  had  to  undergo  the  humiliating  ceremony  of  deg- 
radation, being  deprived,  one  at  a  time,  of  all  their  sacerdotal  vest- 
ments. Burlamachi  and  Nardi  assert  that  the  prelate,  whose  duty 
it  was  to  perform  this  act,  said  to  Savonarola:  "I  separate  thee 
from  the  Church  militant  and  triumphant;"  and  that  the  unfortu- 
nate firmly  and  loudly  replied :  "  From  the  Church  militant,  yes — 
from  the  Church  triumphant,  no !"    The  three  friars  were  then  asked 

'  For  other  writers  who  bring  the  same  charge  against  the  commission,  see  Mura- 
tori.  Annals  of  Italy,  p    1498. 


whether  they  accepted  the  plenary  indulgence  which  the  Pontiff 
accorded  them,  and  they  all  three  bowed  their  heads  and  answered 
in  the  affirmative.  They  were  then  strangled,  and  their  bodies 
reduced  to  ashes,  which,  to  prevent  any  superstitious  veneration, 
were  thrown  into  the  Arno.^ 

The  following  reflections  of  Christophe  on  the  character  of 
Savonarola  are  worthy  of  the  reader's  attention:  "Certain  names 
have  a  fatality  attached  to  them— we  can  neither  praise  them  nor 
blame  them  by  halves.  Some  make  a  fanatic,  a  sectarian,  an  im- 
postor, of  Savonarola;  others,  an  apostle,  a  saint.  The  fact  is 
there  is  something  of  all  these  in  the  Dominican.  If  we  open  the 
door  of  his  cell  in  St.  Mark's  and  there  contemplate  him  at  the 
foot  of  the  crucifix,  attenuated  by  fasting  and  drowned  in  an 
ecstasy  of  prayer;  if  we  follow  him  to  Santa  Maria  del  Fiore  and 
hear  him  reproaching  voluptuous  Florence  with  her  vices,  Savona- 
rola is  a  saint,  an  apostle.  But  if  we  turn  to  the  other  side,  and 
behold  the  tribune  who  mixes  politics  with  religion,  the  declaimer 
who  inveighs  against  the  existing  powers,  the  seer  who  opposes  a 
divine  mission  to  the  authority  of  the  head  of  the  Church,  Savona- 
rola is  very  like  a  fanatic,  a  sectarian,  an  impostor.  Unfortunately 
he  finished  his  life  with  the  latter  character ;  such  was  the  impres- 
sion he  left  with  the  spectators  when  he  left  the  scene,  and  we 
may  well  ask  ourselves  whether,  if  he  had  preserved  the  popular 
favor,  he  would  have  anticipated  the  role  of  the  monk  of  Witten- 
burg.  Protestants  appear  not  to  doubt  it,  for  they  claim  Savona- 
rola as  one  of  their  forerunners.  But  they  forget  that  this  monk 
broke  the  link  which  might  have  connected  him  with  their  rebel- 
lion, on  the  day  when,  at  the  foot  of  the  stake,  he  accepted  the 
absolution  of  the  Pope,  and  handed  down  to  posterity  that  tardy 
but  solemn  proof  of  his  repentance.  .  .  .  Savonarola  knew  not 
how  to  be  either  saint  or  apostle.  We  would  hesitate  to  call  him 
a  sectary,  and  we  would  dislike  still  more  to  style  him  an  impos- 
tor. We  regard  him  as  a  sincere,  but  a  prodigiously  imaginative 
preacher.  If  we  have  studied  him  rightly,  he  appears  to  have  been 
carried  away  in  the  current  of  an  unregulated  imagination  from  the 
day  when  he  began  his  prophetic  exposition  of  the  Apocalypse  to 
that  when  he  openly  substituted  for  the  authority  of  the  Church  that 
of  his  own  pretended  celestial  mission.  Undoubtedly  his  eloquence 
is  wonderful,  but  it  is  that  of  a  vehement  declaimer  rather  than 
that  of  a  solid  and  enlightened  teacher.  We  see  in  it  the  violent 
and  convulsive  agitation  of  a  fever,  rather  than  an  effort  of  power- 
ful and  healthy  thought.  His  strength  does  not  warm  ;  it  burns, 
it  boils  over  like  the  lava  from  a  volcano.     It  does  not  illumine, 

Razzi:  MS.  Life  of  Savonarola  Sanuto ;  loc.  cit.,  b.  6. 

56  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

it  dazzles ;  it  does  not  guide,  it  pulls ;  it  does  not  march,  it  tum- 
bles. His  spirit  cannot  understand  the  positive  side  of  things, 
Savonarola  is  seldom  true;  exaggeration  seems  to  be  his  domain; 
his  figures  are  colossal,  his  situations  forced,  his  end  greater  than 
his  means.  We  need  not  be  surprised  if  a  man  so  organized,  with 
such  power  of  imagination  and  such  weakness  of  sense,  influenced 
by  the  enthusiasm  which  drinks  his  words,  and  by  an  idolatrous 
worship  accorded  him, — if  such  a  man  becomes  intoxicated  with 
himself,  .  .  .  and  if  he  believes  himself  to  be  the  envoy  of  the 
Lord.  Savonarola  succumbed  to  the  hatred  of  factions  which  he 
had  excited  against  himself.  In  our  days  he  would  have  suc- 
cumbed to  ridicule." 

Protestants  have  frequently  spoken  of  Savonarola  as  a  precursor 
of  the  "  Reformation."  Luther  insisted  that  the  unfortunate  Do- 
minican taught  the  doctrine  of  justification  by  faith  alone,  and  in 
1 523  he  caused  Savonarola's  meditation  on  the  70th  psalm  to  be  cir- 
culated throughout  Germany,  together  with  a  preface  by  himself,  in 
which  he  declared  that  Friar  Jerome  was  his  forerunner,  "  although 
some  of  the  theological  mud  yet  stuck  to  the  feet  of  the  holy  man." 
He  asserts  that  Savonarola  taught  his  own  cardinal  doctrine,  and 
that  ''for  this  reason  he  was  burnt  by  the  Pope,"  and  he  adds: 
"Christ  canonized  him  because  he  did  not  rely  upon  vows  or  a 
cowl,  upon  masses  or  a  rule,  but  upon  meditation  on  the  gospel  of 
peace;  and  covered  with  the  breastplate  of  justice,  armed  with  the 
shield  of  faith  and  the  helmet  of  salvation,  he  enlisted,  not  in  the 
Order  of  Preachers,  but  in  the  army  of  the  Christian  Church." 
Savonarola  was  not  put  to  death  by  the  Pope,  nor  was  his  fate 
owing  to  the  cause  alleged  by  the  ex-Augustinian,  and  the  very 
work  upon  which  the  latter  relies  to  prove  his  point  shows  the 
former's  orthodoxy  in  the  doctrine  of  grace.  Luther  draws  com- 
fort from  the  following  passage:  "  I  will  hope  in  the  Lord,  and 
soon  I  shall  be  freed  from  all  tribulation.  And  by  what  merit  ? 
Not  by  mine,  but  by  Thine,  Lord.  I  offer  not  my  own  justice,  but 
I  seek  Thy  mercy.  The  Pharisees  gloried  in  their  justice;  hence 
they  had  not  that  of  God,  which  is  obtained  by  grace  alone,  and 
no  one  will  ever  be  just  before  God,  merely  because  of  having  per- 
formed the  works  of  the  law.  Soldier  of  Christ,  what  is  your  mind 
in  these  combats  ?  Have  you  faith,  or  not  ?  Yes,  I  have  (you 
answer).  Know  then  that  this  is  a  great  grace  of  God,  for  faith  is 
His  gift,  and  not  for  our  works."  But  this  passage  is  explained 
by  its  continuation,  for,  meditating  upon  the  next  verse,  "  Incline 
Thy  ear  unto  me,  and  save  me,"  Savonarola  says  :  "  Let  thy  sor- 
row show,  if  it  can,  one  sinner,  even  the  greatest  one,  who  has 
turned  to  the  Lord,  and  has  not  been  received  and  justified.  .  .  . 
Hast  thou  not  heard  the  Lord  saying  that  whenever  a  sinner  weeps, 

Savonarola.  ^7 

and  grieves  for  his  sins,  He  will  not  remember  his  iniquities  ?  .  .  . 
Hast  thou  fallen  ?  Arise,  and  mercy  will  find  thee.  Art  thou 
being  ruined?  Cry  out,  and  mercy  will  come."  That  Savona- 
rola's belief  concerning  grace  was  far  from  the  Lutheran,  is  shown 
by  the  Rule  for  a  Good  Life,  which,  when  requested  by  his  jailor 
to  leave  him  some  souvenir,  he  wrote  on  the  cover  of  a  book.  In 
it  he  says :  "  A  good  life  depends  altogether  upon  grace ;  hence 
we  must  strive  to  acquire  it,  and  when  we  have  received  it,  we  must 
try  to  increase  it.  .  .  .  It  is  certainly  a  free  gift  of  God ;  but  exam- 
ination into  our  sins,  and  meditation  on  the  vanity  of  worldly 
things,  prepare  us  for  grace ;  confession  and  communion  dispose 
us  to  receive  it.  .  .  .  Perseverance  in  good  works,  in  confession, 
and  in  all  that  disposes  us  to  grace,  is  the  true  and  sure  means  to 
increase  it."  Protestants  who  would  like  to  claim  Savonarola  as 
a  precursor  of  the  Lutheran  movement,  should  attend  to  the  fol- 
lowing passage,  taken  from  the  fourth  book  of  his  Triumph  of  the 
Cross.  "  Since  Peter  was  made  His  vicar  by  Christ,  and  was  con- 
stituted by  Him  pastor  of  the  whole  Church,  it  follows  that  all  the 
successors  of  Peter  have  the  same  power.  And  since  the  bishops 
of  the  Roman  See  hold  the  place  of  Peter,  it  is  evident  that  the 
Roman  Church  is  the  leader  and  mistress  of  all  the  churches,  and 
that  the  entire  congregation  of  the  faithful  should  be  united 
with  the  Roman  Pontiff.  He,  therefore,  who  differs  in  doctrine 
from  the  unity  of  the  Roman  Church,  certainly  recedes  from 
Christ.  But  all  heretics  differ  from  that  Church;  therefore,  they 
are  out  of  the  right  path,  and  cannot  be  called  Christians. 
He  is  to  be  styled  a  heretic  who  perverts  the  sacred  pages  and 
the  doctrine  of  the  Holy  Roman  Church,  and,  following  the 
sect  of  his  own  choice,  obstinately  perseveres  in  it.  As  has 
often  been  said,  truth  agrees  with  truth ;  all  truths  confirm  each 
other.  But  heretics  so  differ  among  themselves  that  they  agree 
in  almost  nothing ;  it  is  very  plain,  therefore,  that  they  are  stran- 
gers to  truth.  However,  the  doctrine  of  the  Roman  Church,  in 
all  that  pertains  to  faith  and  morals,  is  one ;  and  although  Catho- 
lic teachers  are  almost  innumerable,  they  neither  depart  from  that 
doctrine  nor  wish  to  differ  from  it.  The  kingdom  of  Christ  and 
of  the  Church  militant  is  not  only  established  to  endure  until  the 
end  of  the  world;  after  the  renovation  of  the  universe,  it  will  exist 
forever,  as  the  Gospel  and  all  the  Scriptures  and  the  monuments 
of  the  saints  testify.  Heretics,  who  have  bitterly  persecuted 
Catholics,  have  not  been  able  to  preserve  their  lines  against  the 
Roman  Church,  but  have  been  utterly  routed,  together  with  their 
depraved  dogmas  and  the  obstinacy  of  their  followers.  It  is  cer- 
tain, then,  that  their  false  volumes  come  not  from  God,  that  their 
doctrine  is  not  Christian." 

38  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

In  1548  the  celebrated  Dominican,  Ambrose  Catarino  (Lan- 
cellotto  Politi),  published  at  Venice  a  Discourse  against  the  Doc- 
trine and  Prophecies  of  Friar  Jerome  Savonarola,  in  which  he  drew 
attention  to  many  propositions  which  he  deemed  contrary  to 
Catholic  teaching ;  but  he  declared  that  he  did  "  not  combat  Savona- 
rola, who  was  worthy  of  compassion  rather  than  of  blame,  but 
only  his  errors,  which  yet  survived  in  the  minds  of  those  who,  not 
without  scandal  and  danger  to  their  souls,  believed  in  him."^ 
Probably  in  consequence  of  this  work,  Pope  Paul  IV.  ordered  an 
inquiry  into  Friar  Jerome's  works,  and  when  the  commissioners 
read  to  him  some  extracts,  he  exclaimed:  "Why,  this  is  Martin 
Luther !"  But  after  the  examination  was  finished,  the  only  decision 
pronounced  was  a  "suspension"  of  fifteen  of  the  sermons  and  of 
the  dialogue  on  Prophetic  Truth.  And  in  the  Index  of  the  Coun- 
cil of  Trent  these  works  are  prohibited  only  "  until  corrected," 
which  certainly  implies  that  they  contain  only  accidental,  not 
essential,  errors. 

The  sermons  of  Savonarola  were  placed  upon  the  Roman  Index 
"until  corrected,"  but  his  other  works  are  animated  by  a  spirit  of 
the  most  tender  piety,  and  are  thoroughly  orthodox.  His  Triumph 
of  the  Cross  consists  of  four  books  on  the  evidences  of  Christianity, 
and  is  written  in  a  vein  of  calmness  very  surprising  to  one  who 
has  just  been  subjected  to  the  fire  of  the  author's  sermons.  His 
five  books  on  the  Simplicity  of  the  Christian  Life  are  preceded  by 
an  epistle  to  the  citizens  of  Florence,  in  which  he  thus  describes 
his  work  :  "  I  shall  try  to  adopt  natural  reason,  rather  than  the 
authority  of  the  divine  writings.  And  I  shall  do  so,  because  of 
the  incredulous,  the  wise  ones  of  this  age,  that  is  to  say,  the 
philosophers  and  orators,  the  poets  and  others  of  inflated  intellect, 
who  think  that  the  Christian  life  is  superstition,  and  that  its  sim- 
plicity is  foolishness  ;  also,  because  of  the  condition  of  our  un- 
happy age,  in  which  faith  has  grown  so  weak,  and  the  supernatural 
light  has  been  so  nearly  extinguished,  that  I  am  unable  to  decide 
whether  those  who  acknowledge  their  belief  merely  regard  it  as  an 
affair  of  opinion,  and  hold  it  because  it  was  taught  them  in  child- 
hood, or  whether  they  really  cling  to  it  as  something  taught  by 
supernatural  authority.  I  hesitate  in  pronouncing  upon  the  faith 
of  Christians  of  to-day,  for  charity  has  grown  cold,  and  the  fruit  of 

1  Catarino  had  a  perfect  mania  for  scenting  heresy  nearly  everywhere  and  in  nearly 
every  author.  He  even  denounced  to  the  Faculty  of  Paris  many  propositions  of  the 
great  Thomas  de  Vio  (called  Cajetan,  from  his  birthplace  and  See  of  Gaeta).  But 
he  was  well  rebuked  by  Bartholomew  Spina,  master  of  the  apostolic  palace,  who, 
when  Catarino  was  named  to  a  bishopric,  brought  forth  fifty  propositions,  taken  from 
the  zealot's  writings,  which,  the  critic  insisted  (though  without  reason),  were  heretical. 

Savonarola,  ^ 

good  works  does  not  appear.  But  since  the  natural  light  does  not 
fail  in  man,  so  long  as  he  acts  according  to  natural  reason,  let  the 
intellect,  at  least,  of  these  people  be  convinced,  and  let  them  under- 
stand that  the  Christian  life  is  truth  and  simplicity  ;  that  it  is  not 
foolishness,  but  the  wisdom  of  God  ;  perhaps,  then,  they  will  cease 
to  calumniate  it.  I  trust,  however,  in  the  Lord  Jesus,  that  you 
will  find  in  this  book  nothing  contrary  to  Holy  Writ,  or  to  the 
sayings  of  the  holy  Doctors,  or  to  the  teaching  of  the  Holy  Roman 
Church,  to  whose  correction  I  have  always  submitted,  and  do 
submit;  but  that  you  will  discover  in  it  the  full  truth,  which 
came  down  from  heaven  to  our  fathers  who  everywhere  preached 
it,  and  left  it  to  us  in  writing,  confirmed  by  signs  and  miracles.'" 

In  this  work  Savonarola  leads  his  reader  to  come,  in  each  book, 
to  a  certain  number  of  Conclusions.  Thus,  in  the  first  book,  the 
conclusions  are  as  follows  :  The  Christian  life  is  that  in  which  the 
doctrine  of  Christ  is  followed,  and  His  conduct  imitated.  It  is 
better  than  any  other  which  can  be  found  or  excogitated.  It  is 
not  founded  in  any  natural  love.  Nor  is  it  based  on  the  sensitive- 
ness of  man.  Neither  is  it  founded  on  the  sole  natural  light  of 
reason.  It  proceeds  from  no  natural  cause.  It  proceeds  from  no 
spiritual  creature.  Its  root  and  foundation  is  the  grace  of  God. 
It  tends,  with  all  its  powers,  to  augment  and  preserve  the  gift  of 
grace.  For  these  ends,  prayer  is  a  better  means  than  any  other 
good  work.  The  devout  and  frequent  use  of  the  sacraments  of 
Penance  and  the  Holy  Eucharist  furnish  the  best  means  to  preserve 
and  to  augment  the  gift  of  grace.  The  second  book  treats  of  sim- 
plicity of  heart ;  the  third,  of  exterior  simplicity ;  the  fourth,  of 
rejection  of  superfluities,  and  of  almsgiving ;  the  fifth,  of  the  hap- 
piness of  the  Christian  life.  The  Meditations  on  the  Psalms, 
Miserere,  In  Te  Domine  speravi,  and  Qui  regis  Israel,  form,  to 
use  the  words  of  the  Dominican  censor  of  the  edition  before  us,  "  a 
honeyed  book,  full  of  the  sweetness  of  piety,  and  it  cannot  be 
read  without  fruit  if  it  is  read  attentively."  This  book  is  pecu- 
liarly interesting  from  the  fact  that  Savonarola  composed  it  while 
in  prison.  The  following  touching  prayer  is  prefixed  to  the 
meditation  on  the  Miserere.  "Unhappy  me!  I  have  offended 
heaven  and  earth,  and  am  destitute  of  help.  Where  shall  I  go  ? 
To  whom  shall  I  turn  ?  Who  will  have  mercy  on  me  ?  I  dare 
not  lift  my  eyes  to  heaven,  for  I  have  grievously  offended  heaven. 
I  find  no  refuge  on  earth,  for  I  have  been  a  scandal  to  earth. 
What  then  shall  I  do  ?  Shall  I  despair  ?  God  forbid  !'  God  is 
merciful,  God  is  piteous,  my  Saviour  is  kind.     God  alone,  then,  is 

Works  of  Friar  Jerome  Savonarola;  Grenoble,  1666,  vol.  ii. 

40  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

my  refuge;  He  will  not  despise  His  work;  He  will  not  spurn  His 
image.  To  Thee,  therefore,  most  kind  God,  I  come,  sad  and  de- 
jected ;  Thou  alone  art  my  hope,  my  encouragement.  But  what 
shall  I  say  to  Thee,  since  I  dare  not  raise  my  eyes  ?  I  must  pour 
forth  the  words  of  contrition,  and  implore  Thy  pity,  crying : 
Miserere  !  "  Another  interesting  work  of  Savonarola's  is  a  dialogue 
between  the  soul  and  a  spirit,  entitled  TJie  Solace  of  My  Journey, 
the  tone  and  object  of  which  may  be  gathered  from  the  first  sen- 
tences :  "  Spir.  I  am  now  thinking  of  returning  to  my  home,  to 
see  the  God  from  whom  I  was  banished;  but  thou  shalt  go  with 
me,  my  spouse.  Soul.  But  I  know  not  the  way  to  so  great  a  joy. 
Spir.  Our  way  is  Christ.  Soul.  But  faith  wavers.  Spir.  He  who 
approaches  God,  should  believe  that  He  is.  Soul.  And  yet,  he  that 
is  hasty  to  give  credit,  is  light  of  heart  [Eccles.,  xix.  4).  Spir. 
But  to  believe  in  God  is  the  part  of  gravity  and  of  wisdom.  Soul. 
Has  God  ever  spoken  to  thee  ?  Spir.  I  believe  those  to  whom 
He  has  deigned  to  speak.  Soul.  But  how  do  you  know  that  they 
heard  God  speaking  ?  Spir.  Miracles  have  proven  it.  Soul. 
Miracles  have  ceased ;  what  then  shall  persuade  me  ?  Spir. 
Doubtest  thou  that  God  is  ?  Soul.  Many  doubt,  for  no  one  has 
ever  seen  God  {John,  i.  18).  Spir.  But  such  have  no  intellect, 
according  to  the  Psalmist  (xiii.  i.)  :  *  The  fool  hath  said  in  his 
heart,  there  is  no  God.'  Soul.  How  canst  thou  prove  that  God  is  ? 
....  I  admit  the  force  of  thy  argument,  but  I  ask,  ....  what 
is  God  ?  Spir.  If  carnal  men  could  know  what  God  is,  He  could 
not  be  God.  For  we  can  only  know  tangible  and  sensible  things  ; 
God  is  not  one  of  these,  nor  can  He  be  presented  to  our  intellects 
as  He  really  is  ;  it  is  sufficient  that  we  know  what  He  is  not  .... 
Soul.  Thy  words  have  convinced  me,  and  I  already  yearn  for  the 
sight  of  God ;  but  I  ask  myself,  what  if  God  does  not  grant  it  ? 
Has  He  promised  to  thus  bless  those  who  love  Him  ?  Spir.  Let 
what  thou  hast  now  learnt  suffice  for  to-day  The  night  ap- 
proaches; let  us  seek  our  abode  in  silence,  and  pray  God  that 
to-morrow  thou  mayest  acquire  more  of  the  science  of  salvation." 
The  first  book  of  this  Dialogue,  as  we  have  seen,  treats  of  God ; 
the  second,  of  the  truth  of  the  faith  ;  the  third,  of  the  Messiah, 
against  the  Jews;  the  fourth,  of  the  articles  of  faith,  against  phil- 
osophasters ;  the  fifth,  of  the  reasons  of  probability  which  favor 
the  articles  of  faith ;  the  sixth,  of  the  future  life  ;  the  seventh,  of 

We  now  ask  the  reader's  attention  to  the  following  remarks  of 
Cantu :  **  A  man  of  faith,  of  superstition,  of  genius,  Savonarola 
abounded  in  charity.  Contrary  to  Luther,  who  confided  entirely 
in  reason,  he  believed  in  personal  inspiration.     From  his  works 


may  be  taken  arguments  both  for  and  against  him ;  and  by  com- 
paring them,  we  may  perceive  how  he  sought  to  harmonize  reason 
with  faith,  the  Catholic  reh'gion  with  poh'tical  Hberty.  He  never 
denied  the  authority  of  the  Holy  See,  although  he  resisted  him 
whom  he  regarded  as  an  illegitimate  Pope,  and  against  whom  he 
invoked  a  Council  which  should  reform  the  Church.  Vanity  of 
applause  and  impatience  of  contradiction  led  him  to  excess,  but  he 
acted  with  a  pure  conscience  and  from  no  personal  ambition.  He 
did  not  try  to  propagate  his  ideas  by  force,  but  by  example  ;  that 
is,  he  believed  in  the  power  of  truth  ....  He  thought  to  guide 
the  crowd  by  means  of  its  passions,  and,  as  always  happens,  he 
became  the  victim  of  these  passions.  He  alone  is  a  heretic  who 
obstinately  defends  something  contrary  to  what  is  defined  to  be  of 
faith.  The  fame  of  Savonarola  remained  suspended  between 
heaven  and  hell,  but  his  end  was  deplored  by  all,  and  perhaps  first 
by  those  who  had  caused  it.  In  the  churches  of  Santa  Maria 
Novella  and  San  Marco  he  is  depicted  as  a  saint,  and  Raphael 
placed  him,  in  the  Loggie  of  the  Vatican,  among  the  Doctors  of 
the  Church ;  portraits  of  him  were  kept  and  venerated,  not  only 
by  the  pious  of  Florence  who  continued  to  oppose  corruption  and 
its  consequent  slavery,  but  even  by  great  saints  ....  It  is  said 
that  Clement  VIII.  swore,  in  1598,  that  if  he  succeeded  in  acquir- 
ing possession  of  Ferrara,  he  would  canonize  Savonarola.  Sera- 
fino  Razzi,  a  Dominican  of  Florence,  and  infatuated  with  Friar 
Jerome,  often  exhorted  the  Pontiff  to  this  step,  and  when  he  saw 
the  thing  put  off,  he  procured  a  little  donkey,  and,  septuagenarian 
though  he  was,  started,  during  the  Jubilee,  for  Rome.  But  the 
Pope,  '  fearing  much  opposition,'  would  not  see  him,  and  would 
not  allow  him  to  publish  the  Life  of  Savonarola  that  he  had 
written  ;  in  vain  had  the  Dominicans  prepared  an  office  for  the 

1  The  Proper  Office  for  Friar  Jerome  Savonarola  and  his  companions^  written  in 
the  16th  century,  and  now  published  for  the  first  time,  tmder  the  auspices  of  Count 
C.  Capponi,  with  a  Preface  by  Ccesar  Guasti.  Prato,  i860.  We  subjoin  three  of  the 
Lessons  from  this  Office.  "  Lesson  \\.  When  the  work  of  preaching  was  confided  to 
Jerome,  having  been  instructed  by  divine  revelation,  he  announced  the  future  calami- 
ties of  Italy  and  the  coming  renovation  of  the  Church.  While  the  king  of  France 
was  menacing  the  Florentines,  the  man  of  God  was  sent  to  him  to  appease  him  by 
his  prudence  and  his  sanctity ;  he  went  to  Pisa,  and  pursuaded  Charles  VIII.  Re- 
turning to  Florence,  he  began  to  promulgate  the  divine  will  with  an  eloquence  which 
hitherto  he  had  not  possessed,  and  with  such  effect  that  it  seemed  miraculous." 
"  Lesson  vii.  His  soul  was  often  so  united  to  God  that  his  body  become  insensible  to 
material  things,  was,  as  it  were,  dead.  During  the  last  ten  years  of  his  life  he  pre- 
pared none  of  his  sermons  before  he  had  received  the  divine  instructions  as  to  what 
he  should  say.    Who  can  describe  his  fluency  of  speech,  the  sublimity  of  his  eloquence, 

42  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

"If  the  philosophical  Naudet  called  him  a  modern  Arius  or 
Mohammed,  the  devout  Father  Touron  thought  him  a  messenger 
of  God ;  Sts.  Philip  Neri  and  Catharine  de  Ricci  venerated  him 
as  blessed,  and  Benedict  XIV.  deemed  him  worthy  of  canoniza- 
tion. Not  one  of  the  followers  of  Friar  Jerome  became  a  disciple  of 
Luther  or  a  betrayer  of  his  country s  liberty.  Michael  Angelo,  who 
raised  bastions  for  his  native  city  and  the  greatest  temple  in  Chris- 
tendom, always  venerated  Savonarola.  Machiavelli,  who  never 
embraced  any  opinions  not  in  vogue,  admired  him  at  first ;  he 
commenced  to  ridicule  him  only  when  he  himself  had  fully  de- 
veloped a  policy  that  was  diametrically  opposite  to  that  of  the 
friar,  namely,  a  policy  without  God,  without  Providence,  without 
morality — an  innate  depravity,  though  without  original  sin  and 
without  a  Redeemer — and  which  expected  to  regenerate  Italy, 
not  only  without  the  Church,  but  in  spite  of  the  Church."^ 

Much  has  been  written  for  and  against  Savonarola's  claims  to 
the  gift  of  prophecy.  It  is  certain  that  very  many  wise  and  cool- 
headed  men  among  his  contemporaries  credited  his  predictions  ; 
for  instance,  Pico  della  Mirandola,  Marcilio  Ficino,  and  St.  Philip 
Neri.  The  reader  may  be  interested  in  the  following  remarks  of 
the  prudent  and  observing  Philip  de  Commines  :  "  I  have  already 
told  how  a  Friar-Preacher,  or  Jacobin,  a  resident  of  Florence  for 
fifteen  years,  and  enjoying  a  reputation  for  great  sanctity — whom 
I  conversed  with  in  1495 — Jerome  by  name,  foretold  many  things 
which  afterwards  happened.  He  had  always  insisted  that  the  king 
would  cross  the  mountains,  and  he  publicly  declared  that  this  and 
other  things  had  been  revealed  to  him  by  God.     He  said  that  the 

the  majesty  of  his  expression?  His  voice  was  clear;  his  gesture  animated;  his 
countenance,  not  ardent,  but  really  inflamed.  Through  him  peace  was  made  among 
citizens ;  the  morals  of  men  were  so  changed  that  they  seemed  to  be  other  persons. 
The  young,  imbued  with  Christian  simplicity,  did  nothing  impure ;  in  their  pious  zeal, 
they  roused  the  indolent,  penetrated  into  their  houses,  seized  upon  their  vicious  books 
and  pictures,  and  burned  them  in  the  presence  of  the  multitude."  "  Lesson  viii.  As  his 
fame  increased,  just  so  did  the  number  and  ardor  of  his  enemies.  At  length,  a  crowd 
attacked  the  convent  of  St.  Mark,  demanding  the  person  of  Jerome  ;  but  the  gates 
were  defended  by  the  armed  men  surrounding  the  friar.  Then  the  convent  was 
assailed,  Jerome  kneeling  at  one  of  the  altars,  praying  for  friends  and  enemies. 
Fire  opened  a  way  for  the  besiegers,  and  they  penetrated  into  the  convent,  destroying 
everything  they  met.  The  magistrates,  informed  of  these  excesses,  took  charge  of  Friars 
Jerome,  Dominick  and  Sylvester.  Jerome  was  imprisoned,  and  though  twice  subjected 
to  the  torture,  refused  to  retract  his  predictions.  Finally,  the  wicked  man  caused  him 
and  his  two  companions  to  be  strangled  and  burnt ;  his  ashes  were  thrown  into  the 
Arno,  but  his  soul  took  up  its  abode  in  heaven."  As  late  as  August  20th,  1 593,  an  arch- 
bishop of  Florence,  writing  from  Rome  to  the  grand-duke  Ferdinand  I.,  complained 
of  the  recitation  of  this  Office  by  the  friars  of  St.  Mark's,  but  he  admitted  that  the  recita- 
tion  was  private. 

1  Heretics  of  Italy,  Discourse  xi. 



king  had  been  chosen  by  God  to  reform  the  Church  by  force,  and 
to  chastise  the  tyrants  (of  Italy) ;  and  because  he  declared  that  he 
knew  these  future  things  by  revelation,  many  murmured  against 
him,  and  he  acquired  the  hatred  of  the  Pope  and  of  many  of  the 
Florentines.  His  life  was  the  most  beautiful  in  the  world,  as 
every  one  could  see,  and  his  sermons  against  vice  converted  many 
in  that  city  to  a  good  life,  as  I  have  said.  At  this  date  of  1498, 
when  King  Charles  died,  Friar  Jerome  also  passed  away — four  or 
five  days  intervening  between  the  two  deaths,  and  I  will  tell  you 
why  I  note  the  date.  He  had  always  publicly  preached  that  if  the 
king  did  not  return  into  Italy  to  accomplish  the  task  God  had 
assigned  him,  God  would  cruelly  punish  him  ;  and  all  these  ser- 
mons were  printed  and  sold.  And  this  same  threat  of  cruel  pun- 
ishment had  been  often  written  to  the  king,  before  his  death,  by 
the  said  Jerome,  as  the  friar  himself  told  me  in  Italy,  saying  that 
the  sentence  of  heaven  was  pronounced  against  the  king,  if  he  did 
not  accomplish  God's  will,  and  did  not  restrain  his  soldiers  from 
pillage.  He  predicted  many  true  things  concerning  the  king  and 
the  evils  to  befall  him  ;  the  death  of  his  son,  and  his  own  ;  and  I 
have  seen  the  letters  to  the  king."^  On  May  13th,  1495,  the  Duke 
of  Ferrara  wrote  to  Manfredi,  his  agent  at  Florence,  that  he  had 
understood  that  Friar  Jerome  "  had  said,  and  says,  many  things 
about  the  present  affairs  of  Italy,  and  it  appears  that  he  threatens 
the  Italian  princes.  And  since  he  is  a  virtuous  person  and  a  good 
religious,  we  greatly  wish  to  know  what  he  has  said  and  says, 
with  all  particulars;  we  desire  you  to  see  him,  and  to  request  him, 
in  our  name,  to  tell  what  he  thinks  is  to  happen,  especially  in 
matters  concerning  us."  And  Savonarola  replied  that  he  would 
pray  to  God,  and  then  answer  the  duke.  On  August  8th,  1497, 
this  same  prince  wrote  to  the  friar :  "  We  declare  to  you  that  we 
have  never  doubted  the  future  occurrence  of  all  the  things  you 
have  predicted." 

Memoirs,  b.  viii.,  c.  3. 

44  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 


A  GENERAL  acquaintance  with  the  artistic  structure  of  the 
^^^  Hebrew  poems  is  essential  for  an  adequate  understanding 
of  the  sacred  text.  Much  discussed  problems  are,  however,  in- 
volved even  in  a  superficial  study  of  Scripture  poetry.  The  rat- 
tling of  ancient  cymbals  and  kettle-drums,  and  the  whole  music 
band  of  savage  nations,  are  still  ringing  in  the  ears  of  many  as 
loudly  as  they  rang  in  the  ears  of  Herder's  Alciphron.  For  them 
David  still  dances  before  the  ark,  and  the  prophets  summon  a 
player  that  they  may  feel  his  wild  inspirations.  Others  expect 
to  find  in  Hebrew  poetry  that  beauty  which  they  find  in  the  odes 
of  Horace  and  of  Pindar.  They  imagine  that  there  exists  a  series 
of  rules  of  Hebrew  prosody  as  may  be  found  in  our  larger  Latin 
and  Greek  grammars  for  the  prosody  of  the  classic  languages.  We 
shall  not  attempt  to  settle  all  doubts,  and  answer  all  arguments 
brought  up  by  the  advocates  of  either  side,  but  shall  endeavor  to 
point  out  the  results  obtained  through  the  serious  investigations 
of  the  more  eminent  men  of  both  parties. 

Before  entering  upon  the  technical  structure  of  Hebrew  poetry, 
we  must  know  the  sacred  poems  that  have  come  down  to  us.  Be- 
sides the  Psalms,  the  books  of  Job  and  of  Proverbs,  Ecclesiastes, 
and  the  Canticle  of  Canticles,  we  possess  shorter  poems  in  the 
song  of  Lamech  to  his  two  wives,^  the  blessing  of  Noah,^  of  Mel- 
chisedech,^  of  Rebecca's  kinsfolk,*  of  Isaac,^  of  Jacob,^  the  song 
of  Moses  after  crossing  the  Red  Sea,'  the  victory  song  of  Israel,®  the 
triple  blessing  and  prophecy  of  Balaam,^  the  swan-song  of  Moses,^" 
his  solemn  blessing  of  all  the  tribes  of  Israel,^^  Deborah's  song  of 
victory ,^^  the  song  of  Anna,  the  mother  of  Samuel,^^  the  lament 
of  David  over  Saul  and  Jonathan,"  David's  thanksgiving  for  his 
delivery  from  the  hands  of  all  his  enemies  and  from  the  hand  of 
Saul,'^  his  last  words,''  the  canticles  of  Tobiah'^  and  of  Judith.'® 

1  Gen.  4,  23,  24.  2  Qen.  9,  25,  27. 

3  Gen.  14,  19,  20.  4  Gen.  24,  60. 

6  Gen.  27,  28,  29.  6  Gen.  49,  2-27. 

'  Exod.  15,  1-18.  8  Num.  21,  27-30. 

»  Num.  23,  7,ff.  10  Deut.  32,  1-43. 

11  Deut.  33,  2-29.  12  judg.  5,  2-32. 

13  I  Kings,  2,  i-io.  14  2  Kings,  i,  19-27. 

15  2  Kings,  22,  2-51.  16  2  Kings,  23,  2-7. 

*'  Tob.  3.  ]8  Judg.  16,  2-21. 

Scripture  Pottry. 

To  these  must  be  added  several  passages  of  the  prophets  the 
Lamentations  of  Jeremiah,  for  instance,  Isaiah  38,  Jonah  2  Hab- 
akuk  3,  probably  Daniel  3,  52-90,  and  several  others  concernin<^ 
which  the  learned  have  not  yet  agreed.  The  second  book  ti 
Kings ^  speaks  of  "a  Book  of  the  Just,"  which  is  now  lost;  but 
from  a  short  quotation  of  it,  given  in  Jos.  10,  12,  it  appears  to  have 
been  a  poem.  The  third  book  of  Kings^  tells  us  that  Solomon 
spoke  three  thousand  parables,  and  composed  a  thousand  and  five 
poems,  which  also  are  lost  to  us.  In  the  New  Testament  we  meet* 
three  passages  which  might  be  termed  poems :  The  Magnificat,''  the 
Benedictus,*  and  the  Nunc  dimittis.^  The  spoken  Hebrew  text  of 
these  canticles  not  being  preserved,  it  is  impossible  to  determine 
whether  their  poetic  structure  is  the  same  as  that  of  the  Old  Tes- 
tament poems. 

All  Scripture  poems  may  be  divided  into  two  classes— lyrical 
and  didactic.  The  Psalms  are  mainly  lyrical,  while  the  Proverbs 
and  Ecclesiastes  are  didactic  and  sententious.  The  book  of  Job 
and  the  Song  of  Solomon  are  treated  in  a  rather  dramatic  way ; 
De  Wette  Schrader,^  Ewald,^  Delitzsch,^  and  several  others,  es- 
pecially among  the  Rationalists,  maintain  that  Job  and  the  Canticle 
of  Canticles  are  dramas  in  the  strict  sense  of  the  word.  How  the 
name  drama,  in  its  common  acceptation,  can  apply  to  the  two 
books  in  question  we  are  not  told  by  the  learned  upholders  of  their 
dramatic  nature. 

We  have  come  now  to  a  much  discussed  problem,  the  technical 
structure  of  Hebrew  poetry.  Many  authors,  discontent  with  the 
unsatisfactory  and  unconclusive  arguments  advanced  for  the  dif- 
ferent theories  on  the  subject,  assign  but  vague  and  meaningless 
characteristics  to  our  sacred  poems.  Nordheimer^  may  serve  as 
an  instance  of  this.  "The  most  important  features,"  he  says, 
"  which  distinguish  Hebrew  poetry  from  prose  consist  in  the  na- 
ture of  its  subjects,  its  mode  of  treating  them,  and  the  more  ornate 
character  of  its  style,  which  again  give  rise  to  peculiarities  in  the 
structure  of  sentences  and  in  the  choice  of  words."  And  again: 
**The  sacred  Hebrew  muse,  maintaining  her  primitive  simplicity, 
lays  down  no  arbitrary  laws  of  versification  with  which  to  fetter 
the  genius  of  the  poet ;  she  requires  of  her  votary  neither  more 
nor  less  than  that  he  should  find  himself  in  that  state  of  excited 
and  exalted  feeling  which  is  necessary  to  the  production  of  all  genu- 

1  I,  18.  '  4,  32.    ' 

3  Luc.  I,  46-55.  *  Luc.  I,  68-79. 

^  Luc.  2,  29-32. 

«  Einleitung,  p.  515.  '  Die  poetischen  Biicher  des  A.  T.,  ed.  2,  p.  73  fF. 

^  Commentar  ober  das  Buch  Job,  Leipz.,  1876,  p.  15. 

^  Hebrew  Grammar,  ii.  320. 

46  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

ine  poetry,  and  should  possess  the  power  of  delineating  his  emo- 
tions with  truth  and  vigor."  After  dwelling,  then,  at  some  length 
on  the  universal  features  of  poetic  composition,  he  adds:  "These 
primitive  and  fundamental  characteristics  of  poetry  in  general, 
viz.,  a  constant  brevity  of  expression,  and  a  reinforcing  of  the  senti- 
ments by  means  of  repetition,  comparison,  and  contrast,  have  ever 
remained  the  principal  and  almost  the  sole  distinguishing  features  of 
the  poetry  of  the  ancient  Hebrews.  Accordingly  the  attention  of 
•modern  investigators  of  the  subject  has  been  directed  chiefly  to 
ascertaining  and  classifying  the  different  modes  in  which  this  mu- 
tual correspondence  of  sentences  and  clauses  of  sentences,  termed 
parallelism,  is  exhibited  in  every  species  of  poetical  composition." 
Parallelism,  therefore,  without  any  arbitrary  laws  of  versification 
to  fetter  the  genius  of  the  poet,  is,  according  to  Dr.  Nordheimer, 
the  distinguishing  feature  of  Hebrew  poetry.         . 

After  the  clear  and  learned  investigations  of  Lowth,^  the  differ- 
ent kinds  of  parallelism  are  fully  ascertained  and  classified.  Syn- 
onymous, antithetic,  and  synthetic  parallelisms  are  its  principal 
divisions.  Synonymous  parallelism  consists  in  the  repetition  of  an 
idea  in  nearly  the  same,  or  in  different  words,  in  a  positive  or  a  neg- 
ative clause,  in  every  second  or  every  third  line ;  in  the  last  case, 
when,  namely,  the  first  clause  answers  to  the  third,  and  the  second 
to  the  fourth,  or  when  the  first  and  second  clauses  correspond  with 
the  third  and  fourth,  the  parallelism  is  said  to  be  doubled.  In- 
stances are  common;  Psalm  103,  1-4  may  serve  to  illustrate  sim- 
ple parallelisms : 

f  When  Israel  went  out  of  Egypt, 
■  I  The  house  of  Jacob  from  a  barbarous  people, 

f  Judea  was  made  his  sanctuary, 
'  I  Israel  his  dominion. 

J  The  sea  saw  and  fled : 
^'  I  Jordan  was  turned  back. 

J  The  mountains  skipped  like  rams, 

^'  1  And  the  hills  like  the  lambs  of  the  flock. 

Further  explanation  is  hardly  needed ;  Israel  and  the  house  of 
Jacob,  Egypt  and  a  barbarous  people,  the  sea  and  the  Jordan,  the 
mountains  and  the  hills,  lambs  and  the  rams  of  the  flock,  are 
brought  into  opposition.  An  instance  of  double  synonymous 
parallelism  we  find  in  Psalm  26,  1-3: 

1.  The  Lord  is  my  light  and  my  salvation, 

2.  Whom  shall  I  fear  ? 

3.  The  Lord  is  the  protection  of  my  life  : 

4.  Of  whom  shall  I  be  afraid  ? 

1  De  Sacra  Poesi  Hebraeorum  Praelectiones,  1753  et  1763.  There  is  an  English 
translation  of  this  valuable  work  by  Gregory,  with  notes  by  the  translator,  from  Mi- 
chaelis  and  others,  London,  1787. 

Scripture  Poetry. 

1.  If  enemies  in  camp  should  stand  against  me, 

2.  My  heart  shall  not  fear. 

3.  If  a  battle  should  rise  against  me. 
4-         In  this  will  I  be  comforted. 

Here  we  notice  the  mutual  correspondence  of  the  first  and  third, 
the  second  and  fourth  lines,  constituting  what  is  named  double 
parallelism.  We  find  at  times  three,  four,  or  even  more  lines  in 
the  required  mutual  correspondence,  e.g.^  Psalm  90,  5,  6. 

Thou  shalt  not  be  afraid  of  the  terror  of  the  night. 
Of  the  arrow  that  flieth  in  the  day, 
Of  the  business  that  walketh  about  in  the  dark, 
Of  invasion,  or  of  noon-day  devil. 

Antithetic  parallelism  consists  in  such  a  mutual  relation  of  the 
clauses  or  sentences  that  the  second  is  the  converse  of  the  first. 
The  Book  of  Proverbs  11,  i  ff.  may  serve  as  an  instance  of  this 
kind  of  poetry : 

r  A  deceitful  balance  is  an  abomination  before  God  : 
'  I  And  a  just  weight  is  his  will. 

f  Where  pride  is,  there  also  shall  be  reproach, 

t  But  where  humility  is,  there  also  is  wisdom. 

f  The  simplicity  of  the  just  shall  guide  them, 
^'  (  And  the  deceitfulness  of  the  wicked  shall  destroy  them. 

f  Riches  shall  not  profit  in  the  day  of  revenge : 
^'  \  But  justice  shall  deliver  from  death. 

What  could  be  more  striking  than  the  opposition  between  the 
deceitful  balance  and  the  just  weight,  between  the  abomination 
before  the  Lord  and  the  will  of  God,  between  pride  and  humility, 
reproach  and  wisdom  ?  The  strong  contrast  between  lines  of  this 
kind  of  parallelism  makes  the  thought  very  clear  and  impressive, 
provided  it  be  not  continued  too  long. 

In  synthetic  or  progressive  parallelism  the  inspired  writer,  keep- 
ing his  main  idea  always  in  view,  develops  and  enforces  it  by  ac- 
cessory ideas  and  modifications.  The  praise  of  the  law  of  God, 
as  read  in  Psalm  18,  8-10,  is  a  striking  example: 

The  law  of  the  Lord  is  unspotted— converting  souls : 

The  testimony  of  the  Lord  is  faithful— giving  wisdom  to  little  ones. 

The  justices  of  the  Lord  are  right— rejoicing  hearts: 

The  commandment  of  the  Lord  is  lightsome— enlightening  the  eyes. 

The  fear  of  the  Lord  is  holy — enduring  for  ever  and  ever: 

The  judgments  of  the  Lord  are  true— justified  in  themselves. 

The  whole  passage  intends  to  praise  and  celebrate  God's  law ; 
but  this  main  idea  is  brought  home  to  the  reader  and  enforced  by 
the  accessory  idea  of  the  divine  justice  and  the  fear  of  God,  and 

48  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

by  the  diverse  beneficent  effects  of  God's  commandments  on  the 
soul  of  man. 

If  this  kind  of  parallelism  is  used  to  a  great  length,  without 
being  interrupted  by  either  of  the  two  kinds  of  lines  above  men- 
tioned, it  is  hardly  distinguishable  from  good  prose.  Hence,  ex- 
amples of  poetry  in  which  two,  or  even  all  three  kinds  of  paral- 
lelism intermingle,  are  by  far  the  more  numerous.  The  words  of 
God,  in  which  He  mapped  out  the  mission  of  Isaiah  the  prophet, 
illustrate  this  principle  of  mixed  parallelism,  as  they  illustrate  many 
another  principle  of  both  ascetic  and  psychological  life.  We  read, 
Isaiah  6,  8  f.,  "  And  I  heard  the  voice  of  the  Lord,  saying :  whom 
shall  I  send  ?  and  who  shall  go  for  us  ?  and  I  said :  Lo,  here  am 
I,  send  me.     And  he  said  :  Go,  and  thou  shalt  say  to  this  people  : 

Hearing  hear  and  understand  not : 
And  see  the  vision  and  know  it  not. 

1  I     Blind  the  heart  of  this  people, 

2  2     And  make  their  ears  heavy, 

3  3     And  shut  their  eyes : 

3         4  Lest  they  see  with  their  eyes, 

2         5  And  hear  with  their  ears, 

I         6  And  understand  with  their  hearts, 

7  And  be  converted,  and  I  heal  them." 

The  first  two  verses  are,  at  the  same  time,  progressive  and  anti- 
thetic ;  the  six  lines  that  follow  present  a  beautiful  example  of 
introverted  mixed  parallelism.  In  the  first  three  lines,  as  well  as  in 
the  second  three,  the  ideas  are  progressive,  while  synonymous  cor- 
respondence is  had  between  the  third  and  fourth,  the  second  and 
fifth,  and  the  first  and  sixth  lines.  The  seventh  line  expresses  the 
one  main  thought  which  God  wished  to  convey,  and  for  whose 
emphasis  He  made  use  of  all  the  intermediate  accessory  ideas. 
The  piece,  taken  as  a  whole,  is  therefore  synthetic. 

From  the  very  nature  of  parallelism,  it  is  clear  that  Hebrew 
poetry  is,  to  a  great  extent,  divisible  into  couplets  and  triplets ; 
and  these  may  be  called  its  natural  stanzas.  A  perfect  instance  of 
couplets  we  find  in  the  fifth  chapter  of  Lamentations,  while  the  first, 
second,  and  third  chapters  of  Lamentations  are  written  in  triplets ; 
a  glance  at  the  Hebrew  text  of  the  Old  Testament  will  verify  this. 
In  most  inversions  the  beauties  of  the  original  poetic  structure  are 
destroyed  by  the  introduction  of  paraphrases,  or  by  a  double  ren- 
dering of  the  same  clause,  or  by  a  wrong  division  of  verses,  stanzas, 
and  even  chapters.  In  one  case,  we  may  obtain  an  idea  of  the 
original  from  the  English  version:^ 

1  Lam.  I.  I  f. 

Scripture  Poetry. 

1.  How  doth  the  city  sit  soHtary,  that  was  full  of  people! 
How  is  the  mistress  of  the  Gentiles  become  a  widow  : 
The  princes  of  provinces  made  tributary. 

2.  Weeping  she  hath  wept  in  the  night,  and  her  tears  are  on  her  cheeks  • 
There  is  none  to  comfort  her  among  all  them  that  were  dear  to  her- 
All  her  friends  have  despised  her  and  are  become  her  enemies. 

We  might  continue  quoting  the  first  three  chapters  of  Lamen- 
tations, dividing  each  verse  into  triplets  of  synonymous,  synthetic, 
or  antithetic  lines.  Lamentations  5  may,  as  was  said  above,  be 
divided  into  couplets  of  such  parallel  sentences: 

1.  Remember,  O  Lord,  what  is  come  upon  us  : 
Consider  and  behold  our  reproach. 

2.  Our  inheritance  is  turned  to  aliens  : 
Our  houses  to  strangers,  etc. 

Often,  several  parallel  lines  are  thrown  into  one  stanza,  though 
Hebrew  stanzas  do  not  seem  to  have  obeyed  as  strict  metrical 
laws  as  do  the  stanzas  of  Latin  and  Greek  poets.  But  this  being 
as  yet  uncertain,  we  shall  have  to  speak  of  it  again  when  treating 
of  the  more  recent  views  on  Hebrew  metre.  That  the  inspired 
writers  purposely  divided  some  of  their  pieces  into  such  longer 
and  more  artificial  stanzas  is  plain  from  certain  refrains  occurring 
at  regular  intervals  in  several  Hebrew  poems.  Thus  we  find,  in 
Psalms  41  and  42,  which  constitute,  properly  only  one  psalm,  the 
refrain  :  "  Why  art  thou  sad,  O  my  soul  ?  and  why  dost  thou 
trouble  me  ?  Hope  in  God,  for  I  will  give  praise  to  him :  the  sal- 
vation of  my  countenance  and  my  God,"  repeated  three  times, 
namely,  Psalm  41,  6  and  12,  and  Psalm  42,  6,  five  verses  inter- 
vening between  the  three  several  repetitions,  and  constituting  as 
many  regular  stanzas.  In  the  same  manner  is  Psalm  45  divided 
into  three,  and  Psalm  56  into  two  stanzas. 

Another  sign  of  artistic  design  in  the  building  up  of  stanzas  in 
Hebrew  poems  may  be  seen  in  the  alphabetical  arrangement  of 
several  of  them.  Its  simplest  form  consists  in  making  the  initial 
words  of  the  first  lines  begin  with  the  letters  of  the  alphabet  in 
regular  order.  This  is  the  case  in  Psalms  in  and  112,  Psalms  9, 
25,  34,  etc. ;  Lam.  4,  Proverbs  31,  10-31,  are  also  alphabetical, 
but  in  such  a  way  that  every  distich  or  tristich  begins  with  a  dif- 
ferent letter.  In  some  cases,  the  third  chapter  of  Lamentations, 
for  instance,  the  first  letter  begins  the  initial  words  of  the  first  three 
verses,  the  second  letter  the  initial  words  of  the  second  three  verses, 
continuing  thus  in  regular  alphabetical  order.  Psalm  1 1-8  is  still 
more  remarkable,  because  each  letter  in  succession  commences 
eight  verses,  indicating  that  each  stanza  of  the  psalm  comprises 
eight  verses.  The  peculiarity  of  the  alphabetic  poetry  of  Sacred 
VOL.  XIV. — 4 

50  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review^ 

Scripture  cannot  be  exhibited  in  a  literal  version,  but  the  trans- 
lators have  tried  in  several  instances,  as  in  Psalm  1 18  and  Lamen- 
tations I,  2,  3,  4,  to  compensate  the  reader  by  prefixing-  the  names 
of  the  Hebrew  letters  in  alphabetical  succession  to  their  corre- 
sponding stanzas  or  verses.  Prof.  BickelP  enumerates  fifteen 
sacred  poems  of  the  Old  Testament  in  which  the  alphabetical  ar- 
rangement is  observed.  Whether,  beyond  indicating  the  proper 
division  into  verses  and  stanzas,  this  structure  had  any  meaning, 
cannot  now  be  determined.  Some  think  it  was  employed  to  strike 
the  ear  and  thus  to  deepen  the  impression ;  others  represent  it  as 
a  mere  aid  of  the  memory.  Prof  Bickell  suggests  that  it  indicated 
the  exhaustive  treatment  of  a  subject. 

We  must  conclude,  therefore,  that  our  sacred  writers  often  in- 
tentionally and  artistically  joined  their  parallel  doublets  and  trip- 
lets into  more  lengthy  stanzas,  even  where  they  are  not  expressly 
indicated  by  references  or  by  alphabetical  arrangement.  It  is  not 
difficult  to  see  that  in  Psalms  3,  4,  etc.,  two  distichs  are  united  into 
one  stanza;  in  Psalms  91,  1 12,  etc.,  three;  in  Psalms  120,  121,  etc., 
four;  in  Psalms  131,  etc.,  five;  and  in  Psalms  96,  etc.,  six.  All  He- 
brew poetry  being  subject  to  the  law  of  parallelism,  as  we  saw 
above,  it  may  happen  that  stanzas  are  formed  without  regard  to  the 
number  of  lines,  but  merely  according  to  the  number  of  parallel 
verses.  In  Psalm  2,  e.g.,  we  have  four  stanzas  consisting  of  three 
verses  each,  though  the  number  of  lines  be  seven,  six,  eight,  eight, 
respectively.  In  some  psalms  there  is  a  seeming  redundancy  of 
verses.  Psalm  6,  for  instance,  consists  of  four  stanzas,  preceded 
and  followed  by  a  single  verse ;  but  the  preceding  single  verse  ^  con- 
tains the  subject  matter  of  the  following  three  stanzas,  while  the 
last  stanza  prepares  the  way  for  the  closing  verse.  In  Psalm  13, 
too,  whose  third  verse  according  to  the  Vulgate  reading  is  taken 
from  other  psalms  and  prophecies,  we  may  distinguish  four  stanzas 
followed  by  a  single  closing  verse  which  comprises  the  burden  of 
the  whole  psalm. 

Thus  far  we  have  considered  peculiarities  of  Hebrew  poetry  con- 
cerning the  substance  of  which  there  is  but  little  or  no  doubt.  As 
we  advance  now,  we  shall  find  ourselves  travelling  more  uncertain 
roads.  All  admit  the  existence  of  Biblical  poems ;  all  admit,  too, 
that  in  poetry  we  naturally  and  necessarily  require  rhythm.  The 
question  then  arises:  In  what  does  Hebrew  rhythm  consist? 
Rhythm^  according  to  its  primary  meaning  signifies  number,  but 
number  necessarily  supposes  a  unit  numbered.  In  rhythmical 
language,  then,  we  must  look  for  the  unit,  the  repetition  and  num- 

1  Innsbruck  Theol.  Zeitsch.,  1882,  p.  320. 
''  6,2. 

3  /5  i5-//oV,  numeus. 

Scripture  Poetry.  -j 

ber  of  which  produces  what  is  called  rhythm.  This  unit  may  be 
either  an  idea  or  it  may  be  a  sound.  If  it  is  an  idea,  we  obtain  the 
parallelism  which  thus  far  we  have  been  considering.  It  may  not 
be  out  of  place  here  to  draw  attention  to  the  fact  that  rhythm  of 
ideas  produces  a  more  universal  beauty  than  can  be  obtained  by 
rhythm  of  sound,  for  ideas  remain  identical,  whether  the  poem  be 
translated  or  not,  while  sound  changes,  and'  the  sound  unit  once 
destroyed,  rhythm,  of  course,  vanishes.  It  becomes  clear  from  this 
why,  even  in  the  versions  of  the  Scriptural  poems,  there  is  found 
so  much  poetic  beauty,  for  it  owes  its  existence  to  the  rhythm  of 
ideas  or  to  parallelism.  On  the  other  hand,  every  one  acquainted 
with  the  original  of  our  sacred  poems  knows  that  they  possess, 
in  Hebrew,  a  charm  which  is  entirely  missing  in  the  versions. 
This  cannot  be  the  result  of  parallelism,  since  the  ideas  are  the 
same  in  version  and  original ;  nor  can  it  result  from  a  special  clear- 
ness and  force  of  language  in  the  original,  our  versions  being 
commonly  much  more  easily  understood  than  the  Hebrew  text. 
Therefore  we  rightly  look  in  Hebrew  poetry  for  rhythm  of  sound 
besides  the  rhythm  of  ideas.  This  conclusion,  reached  by  a  pro- 
cess of  elimination,  we  might  have  drawn  from  two  general  prin- 
ciples of  Aristotle,^  that,  namely,  everything  without  rhythm 
(number)  is  unlimited,  and  that  everything  unlimited  is  hard  to 
know  and  unpleasant.  The  original  of  sacred  poetry,  even  apart 
from  the  ideas,  not  being  unpleasant,  we  necessarily  seek  for  sound- 
rhythm  in  it,  if  Aristotle's  principles  be  right. 

Our  last  conclusion  was,  that  in  the  Hebrew  text  of  Sacred 
poetry  there  exists  a  certain  sound-rhythm ;  consequently  there  is 
a  sound-unit,  from  the  repetition  of  which  we  have  rhythm.  What 
can  be  this  sound-unit  ?  Articulate  sound  may  be  considered 
merely  as  an  articulate-unit,  or  it  may  be  measured  by  the  time 
required  to  pronounce  it,  or  it  may  be  classified  according  to  the 
relative  intensity  with  which  it  is  pronounced,  or,  finally,  it  may  be 
considered  according  to  the  vocal  elements  entering  its  compo- 
sition. The  articulated  unit  or  syllable,  the  length  or  quantity  of 
the  syllable,  its  relative  intensity  or  accent,  and,  finally,  its  com- 
ponent vocal  elements,  afford  as  many  possible  units  of  sound- 
rhythm.  French  poetry,  for  instance,  counts  the  number  of  syl- 
lables ;  Latin  and  Greek  poetry  takes  into  account  the  quantity  of 
the  syllable ;  the  German  and  Slavonic  poets  are  guided  by  the 
syllabic  accent;  while  the  unit  of  similar  vocal  composition  of  the 
syllable,  or  rhyme,  is  used  as  an  additional  rhythmical  etnphasis 
in  many  languages. 

One  more  remark  we  must  premise :  Rhythm  must  not  be  con- 

1  Rhetor,  b.  3,  c.  8. 

52  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

founded  with  metre.  All  metre  is,  indeed,  rhythmical,  but  not  all 
rhythm  is  metre.  Venerable  Bede  in  his  book,  De  Metris,  follow- 
ing in  the  footsteps  of  S.  Augustine,^  tells  us  that  metre  is  "  ratio 
cum  modulatione,"  while  he  defines  rhythm,  "  modulatio  sine  ra- 
tione."  The  whole  passage  may  be  found  in  Vossius.'^  Rhythm, 
therefore,  in  its  wide  sense  does  not  require  an  abaolutely  equal 
number  of  units,  but  it  is  content  with  a  relatively  proportionate 
number.  Rhythm  of  proportion  is  required  even  in  prose,  as 
Aristotle  asserts  in  the  above  quoted  chapter.  We  must  deter- 
mine, therefore,  in  the  first  place,  whether  rhythm  of  sound,  merely 
in  its  wide  sense,  occurs  in  Sacred  Scripture,  or  whether  we  also 
find  there  metre  in  the  proper  sense  of  the  word ;  and,  if  metre 
proper  exists  in  Sacred  Scripture,  what  is  the  sound-unit  of  its 
rhythm  ? 

Omitting  all  probable  a  priori  arguments  in  favor  of  the  exist- 
ence of  metre,  properly  so-called,  in  our  sacred  poems,  arguments 
to  be  found  in  Vossius^  where  he  discusses  Aristotle's  view  of 
poetry  and  its  essential  constituent  parts,  we  may  at  once  proceed 
to  enumerate  facts,  from  which  the  existence  of  Hebrew  metre  in 
its  strict  acceptation  follows  with  great  probability.  Such  facts 
are :  The  existence  of  metre  proper  in  several  cognate  Semitic 
languages,  the  psychological  necessity  of  metre  in-  song  accom- 
panied by  dancing,  the  division  of  many  sacred  poems  into  regular 
stanzas,  the  directions  given  in  Holy  Writ  itself  that  certain  psalms 
are  to  be  chanted  after  the  melody  of  others,  which  seems  quite 
meaningless  if  mere  cantillation  were  in  question.  We  must  add 
the  testimony  of  St.  Jerome,  who  speaks  of  heroic  verse,  hex- 
ameters, trimeters,  and  tetrameters,  when  treating  of  Sacred  po- 
etry.* He  even  compares  the  Psalms  to  the  iambic  and  alcaic 
verses  of  Horace  and  Pindar,  and  tells  us  that  Psalm  Ii8  and  the 
long  Mosaic  poems  are  written  in  hexameters  of  sixteen  syllables 
to  the  line.  Flav.  Josephus^  maintains  that  the  songs  of  Moses, 
in  Exodus  15  and  Deut.  33,  are  written  in  hexameter  verse,  the 
Psalms  in  trimeter  and  pentameter.  Here  is  the  place  to  state  the 
reasoning  of  Dr.  J.  Ecker  of  Miinster"  against  Dr.  Bickell's  system 
•of  Hebrew  metre,  which,  in  reality,  is  valid  against  the  existence 
'Of  any  kind  of  metre  in  sacred  poetry.  If  metre  ever  existed, 
.how  could  its  knowledge  be  lost,  since  the  poems  were  of  almost 
daily  use  in  temple  and  synagogue?     Professor  Bickell  answered 

•1  Lib.  iii.  de  Musica.  2  Xom.  v.  inst.  poet.  1.  i,  c.  8,  \  12. 

3  Tom.  5,  de  arr.  poet,  natura  ce.  2  et  3. 

4  r.  Praep.  Evang.  xi.  5  (M.  21,  852)— Praef.  in  lib.  Job;  ad  Paulam  ep.  30,  3 
f  (M.  22,  442) — Praef.  in  Euseb,  Chron.  (M.  27,  223. 

6  Antiq.  ii.  16,  4;  iv.  8,  44;  vii.  12,  3. 

«  Xiterarischer  Handweiser,  N.  320,  September,  1882. 

Scripture  Poetry.  c^ 

the  objection^  by  citing  a  similar  instance.  The  syllabic,  rhythmic, 
and  strophic  structure  of  the  Greek  Church  hymns  had  been  en- 
tirely forgotten  by  the  Greeks  themselves,  though  the  hymns  had 
continued  in  daily  liturgical  use.  Cardinal  Pitra  was  the  first  to 
rediscover  the  metrical  nature  of  the  hymns.  The  learned  Pro- 
fessor observes  that  such  a  forgetfulness  must  have  been  much 
easier  among  the  Hebrews,  psalmody  proper  ceasing  with  the  de- 
struction of  the  temple,  and  being  replaced  later  by  the  mere  re- 
cital of  psalms  in  the  synagogues.  We  must  also  call  attention  to 
the  fact  that  not  all  Hebrew  poems  were  songs,  many  of  them 
belonging  to  didactic  poetry. 

The  probable  existence  of  regular  metre  in  our  sacred  poems 
being  taken  for  granted,  we  may  proceed  to  consider  the  different 
metrical  systems  proposed  at  various  times  as  the  true  keys  to 
Hebrew  poetry.  The  view,  that  in  some  Hebrew  poems  rhyme 
was  intended,  may  be  passed  over  in  silence,  since  real  rhyme  oc- 
curs so  rarely  that  its  occurrence  is  more  easily  explained  by 
chance  than  by  any  rule  of  art.  Those  taking  interest  in  this  pe- 
culiarity may  find  instances  of  it  in  Ps.  8,  5  ;  Is.  33,  22;  Judg.  14, 
8  ;  Gen.  4,  23  f  ;  Numb.  10,  35,  etc.  Instances  of  alliteration  are 
more  frequent.  Dr.  Julius  Ley,  of  Halle,  proposed,  in  1863,  al- 
literation as  the  general  system  of  Hebrew  poetry,  but  being  left 
alone  in  his  theory,  he  himself  abandoned  it  and  became  the  advo- 
cate of  a  more  satisfactory  system. 

The  vocal  elements  of  the  syllable  cannot,  therefore,  be  consid- 
ered as  the  true  unit  of  Hebrew  sound-rhythm.  Nor  were  the 
remaining  three  elements  of  sound,  the  syllable,  its  accent,  its 
quantity,  which  we  recognized  above  as  possible  units  of  sound- 
rhythm,  left  untried.  Since  Josephus,  Eusebius,  Philo,  and  St. 
Jerome  had  asserted  that  in  sacred  poetry  the  verses  and  feet  cor- 
responded to  the  feet  and  verses  of  classic  poetry,  attempts  were 
made  to  scan  the  Psalms  accordingly.  In  1637  appeared  at  Lyons 
the  ^'  Lyre  of  David,"  by  Fr.  Gomar.  The  learned  author  finds 
in  the  Psalms  instances  parallel  to  certain  portions  of  Sophocles 
and  Pindar.  Lud.  Capellus,  in  his  "  Critica  Sacra,"  proved  this 
theory  to  be  untenable.  The  same  system  was  proposed  by  C. 
G.  Anton,^'  and  of  late  by  A.  F.  Manoury.^  William  Jones*  modi- 
fied the  system  a  little  according  to  the  canons  of  Arabic  instead 
of  classic  poetry.  All  closed  syllables,  i.e.,  syllables  ending  in  a 
consonant,  he  considers  as  long,  all  open  syllables,  i.e.,  syllables 
ending  in  vowels,  as  short.     He  admits  the  spondee,  the  -iambus, 

1  Zeitschrift  fur  Katholische  Theologie,  Innsbruck,  1882,  iv.,  789. 

2  Conjectura  de  metro  Hebraeorum  antique,  Lips.,  1770. 
»  Lettre  surla  versification  Hebraique,  Bar  le  Due,  1880. 
4  Poeseos  Asiaticae  Commentarius,  London,  1774. 

54  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

the  trochee,  the  pyrrichius,  the  anapest,  the  bacchius,  the  amphi- 
macer  and  the  molossus,  as  possible  single  feet,  which  he  then  joins 
in  all  possible  ways  into  compound  feet.  After  scanning  six  or 
eight  lines  he  consoles  us  with  the  assurance  that  he  supposes  Job 
28,  the  Lament,  the  songs  of  Moses,  and  Deborah,  also  might  be 
scanned  in  the  same  fashion.  We  cannot  but  smile  at  the  candor 
of  W.  Jones,  when  he  admits  not  to  be  able  to  do  justice  to  this 
subject  without  spending  an  infinite  amount  of  labor  and  time  at 
it,  which  he  says  he  cannot  spare.  Expressing  his  satisfaction 
with  himself  for  having  opened  a  new  road  to  the  true  beauty  of 
Hebrew  poetry,  he  leaves  to  us  all  the  infinite  labor  required  to 
reach  that  beauty. 

It  seems,  then,  that  besides  the  vocal  composition  of  the  syllable, 
we  must  discard  also  syllabic-quantity  as  the  possible  unit  of  He- 
brew sound-rhythm.  Next  follow  the  attempts  to  scan  the  Scrip- 
ture poems  according  to  accent,  or  the  relative  stress  of  the  syl- 
lable. That  the  written  Massoretic  accent  cannot  be  taken  as  the 
leading  principle  of  Hebrew  versification,  is  evident.  If  it  were,  it 
should  have  been  introduced  from  the  beginning,  while  it  dates 
from  several  centuries  after  Christ ;  it  should  be  of  the  same  nature 
in  all  poetic  pieces,  while  one  system  of  accentuation  is  followed 
in  Psalms,  Job,  and  Proverbs,  another  in  the  rest  of  sacred  poetry  ; 
finally,  in  the  different  editions  of  the  same  poetic  passages,  e.g., 
Psalm  17  and  2  Kings,  22,  2,  Psalms  13  and  52,  etc.,  we  should  find 
the  same  accents,  which  is  not  the  case.  The  fruitless  attempts  of 
E.  J.  Greve/  and  of  I.  A.  Bellermann^  to  scan  sacred  poetry  ac- 
cording to  accent,  may  be  seen  in  Rosenmijller.^  Dr.  J.  Ley,  of 
Halle,  proposed  in  1875*  the  system  of  applying  to  Hebrew  po- 
etry the  canons  of  the  old  German  versification — to  count,  namely, 
the  number  of  accented  syllables  in  the  line,  allowing  any  number 
of  unaccented  syllables  to  intervene  between  the  single  accents. 
We  may  accent  a  given  word  or  not,  according  to  the  needs  of  the 
metre ;  in  case  of  necessity,  we  may  admit  even  a  double  accent 
on  the  same  word.  When  verses  are  too  short,  they  are  called 
catalectic;  and  when  too  long,  an  anacrusis-accent^  is  not  counted. 
With  all  these  licenses,  the  divisions  of  the  verse  cannot  be 
brought  into  harmony  with  the  divisions  of  the  sense.  At  times, 
most  closely  connected  words  must  be  separated,  even  single  words 
split,  in  order  to  construct  verses  and  stanzas.     Dr.  Neteler^  had 

1  Ultima  capita  1.  Jobi — accedit  tractatus  de  metris  Heb.  poeticis,  Davent.,  1788. 

2  Versuch  uber  die  Metrik  der  Hebraer.,  Berlin,  1813. 

*  In  Lowth  de  sacra  poesi  Heb.,  Lips.,  181 5,  p.  434  f. 

*  Grundzuge  des  Rhythmus,  des  Vers  und  Strophenbaues  in  der  Hebraischen  Poesie. 
fi  Auftact.  6  Anfang  der  Hebraischen  Metrik  der  Psalmen,  Munster,  1871. 

Scripture  Poetry.  -- 

tried  the  same  theory  without  allowing  as  many  poetic  licenses, 
and  with  a  correspondingly  less  amount  of  success. 

Ch.  A.  Briggs,  Professor  in  Union  Theological  Seminary,  New 
York,  began  a  series  of  articles  on  Hebrew  metre  in  the  April 
number  oi  Hebraic  a,  1886.  His  theory  may  be  summed  up  in  the 
following  words,  taken  from  his  first  article:  "  Hebrew  poetry 
counts  the  words  and  measures  by  the  beats  of  the  accent  .... 
Maqqephs  must  be  inserted  wherever  the  rhythm  requires  it,  for 
this  is  a  device  whereby  two  or  more  words  are  combined  under 
one  rhythmical  accent."  Professor  Briggs  measures  his  lines,  there- 
fore, according  to  accent ;  he  admits  only  one  accent  in  a  given 
word.  But,  if  the  metre  requires  it,  he  unites  two  or  more  words 
into  one  by  means  of  Maqqeph,  avoiding  thus  the  inconvenience 
of  wholly  unaccented  words.  To  avoid  double  accents  on  the 
same  word  he  omits  existing  Maqqephs,  thus  splitting  compound 
words  into  their  component  simple  ones.  These  changes  of  the 
Massoretic  text  presupposed,  he  proceeds  to  illustrate  his  system 
by  scanning  instances  of  Hebrew  trimeter,  tetrameter,  pentameter, 
etc.  The  system,  therefore,  does  not  differ  from  that  of  Drs. 
Neteler  and  Ley,  excepting  that  it  introduces  an  arbitrary  Maq- 
qeph instead  of  an  arbitrary  accent. 

The  weakness  of  Ley's  system  was  shown  in  the  Lit.  Central- 
blatt^  in  a  criticism  coming  probably  from  the  pen  of  Dr.  Merx,  of 
Jena.  The  critic  proves  that  not  the  Massoretic  verse  but  the 
hemistich  is  to  be  considered  as  poetical  unit  of  the  stanza ;  that 
the  verse  division  ought  to  coincide  with  the  division  of  sense,  and 
that  syllables  ought  to  be  counted  instead  of  accents.  Applying 
these  principles  to  the  Book  of  Job,^  he  advanced  the  study  of  He- 
brew metre  more  than  it  had  advanced  for  over  a  century  before 
him.  But  his  system,  too,  has  its  weak  sides.  It  disregards  all 
accent,  and  it  requires  only  an  approximately  equal  number  of 
syllables  in  the  corresponding  hemistichs  ;  for  the  inequality  of 
syllables,  in  the  author's  view,  was  counterbalanced  by  the  melody 
of  song. 

We  see  that,  in  the  systems  thus  far  considered,  the  vocal  com- 
position of  the  syllable,  its  quantity,  its  accent,  the  syllable  itself, 
are  severally  looked  upon  as  units  of  sound- rhythm,  and  that  the 
result  is  not  satisfactory ;  either  because  the  sacred  poems  cannot 
be  scanned  according  to  the  proposed  systems,  or  because  the 
systems  allow  too  many  licenses  to  satisfy  an  honest  inquirer.  Well, 
then,  might  thorough  students  follow  a  hint  of  Gregoriua  Bar  He- 
braeus,'  informing  us  that  other  Syriac  doctors,  Isaac,  namely,  and 

J   1876,  n.  32.  2  Gedicht  von  Hiob,  Jena,  1871. 

s  Ethic,  par.  i.  cp.  5,  sect.  4,  as  quoted  in  Assemani  Bibliotheca  Orientalis,  torn.  i. 
cp.  8. 

56  Amencan  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

Balai,  composed  several  songs  according  to  the  Davidic  verse,  or 
the  verse  of  the  Psalms.  From  the  technical  structure  of  the  poems 
of  Isaac  and  Balai,  therefore,  we  may  learn  the  technical  struc- 
ture of  the  Psalms,  and  consequently  of  all  other  sacred  poems. 
The  Syriac  poems  were  pointed  out  in  another  way  as  the  key  to 
the  Hebrew  poems.  Cardinal  Pitra^  rediscovered  the  metre  of  the 
sacred  Greek  hymns  by  applying  the  metrical  canons  of  the  Syriac 
Madrosche  in  their  scanning,  and  these  in  turn  he  supposes  to 
have  been  modeled  on  Hebrew  psalmody.  Their  close  similarity 
to  the  therapeutic  songs,  as  described  by  Philo,  was  the  basis  of 
Pitra's  supposition. 

The  canons  of  Syriac  metre  are  to  be  found  in  the  introduction 
of  Bickell's  "  Sti.  Ephraemi  Carmina  Nisibena."  ^  Without  entering 
into  technical  details,  it  suffices  for  our  purpose  to  know  that  Sy- 
riac verse  disregards  quantity,  and  counts  the  number  of  syllables, 
every  second  of  which  is  accented,  the  metrical  accident  coin- 
ciding with  the  verbal.  Hence  we  find  only  iambic  and  trochaic 
feet  in  Syriac  verse.  Vowels  are  sometimes  rejected,  sometimes 
inserted,  sometimes  contracted.  Prof.  Bickell  proceeded  next  to 
apply  these  canons  to  sacred  song,  and  succeeded  beyond  all  ex- 
pectation. He  published,  or  rather  announced,  his  theory  in  the 
"Innsbrucker  Theol.  Zeitschrift,"^  explained  it  more  fully  in  his 
"  Metrices  Biblicae  Regulae,"  ^  extended  it  to  all  poetical  passages  of 
the  Old  Testament  in  his  "  Carmina  V.  T.  metrice,"^  which  he  after- 
wards supplemented  at  various  times  in  the  "  Innsbrucker  Theol. 
Zeitschrift."^  G.  Gietmann,  S.  J.,  in  his  "  De  re  metrica  Hebrae- 
orum,"'  follows  the  same  system  of  scanning,  though  he  differs  in 
details  from  Bickell.  The  system  is  adopted  as  the  true  one  by 
men  like  A.  Rohling,'  H.  Lesetre,^  J.  Knabenbauer,  SJ.,'°  F.  Vig- 
ouroux,^^  and  others  of  no  ordinary  reputation.  Nor  can  Bickell's 
system  be  called  new,  for,  besides  Bar  Hebraeus,  who  spoke  of  it 
as  of  a  thing  beyond  dispute,  Fr.  Hare^'  had  proposed  the  same 
system,  at  least  in  substance.  He  admitted  only  dissyllabic  feet, 
made  no  account  of  syllabic  quantity,  and  accepted  only  the  iam- 
bic and  trochaic  movement  like  Bickell ;  unlike  Bickell,  but  like 
Gietmann,  he  did  not  require  that  the  end  of  the  metrical  line 

»  Hymnographie  de  I'Eglise  Grecque,  Rome,  1868. 

2  Leipz.,  1866,  pp.  31-35.  3  i^7g^  pp^  7gj  ^^ 

*  CEniponte,  1879.  5  CEmponte,  1882. 
6  1885,  p.  718  ff. ;  1866,  pp.  205  ff,  355  ff,  546  ff.  7  Friburgi,  i88o. 

8  Das  Salomonische  Spruchbuch,  Mainz,  1879,  P-  21-  and  385  ff. 

*  Le  Livre  des  Psaumes,  Paris,  1883,  p.  23  ff. 

">  Commentar.  in  lib.  Job,  Parisiis,  1885,  p.  18.  n  Manuel  bibl.  ii.  p.  203  ff. 

12  Psalmorum  liber  in  versiculos  metrice  divisus,  Cum  dissertatione  de  antiqua  He- 
braeorum  poesi,  London,  1736. 

Scripture  Poetry.  C7 

should  coincide  with  the  division  of  the  sense.  Lowth/  in  his 
matter-of-fact  criticism,  felt  bound  to  reject  Hare's  system 'entirely, 
and  ever  after  it  was  "  to  dumb  forgetfulness  a  prey."  The  post- 
humous work  of  Le  Hir '  presents,  in  the  essay  preceding  the 
translation  of  Job,  a  system  of  scanning  almost  identical  with  the 
system  now  under  consideration.  Had  the  modest  priest  of  Saint- 
Sulpice  lived  he  would,  no  doubt,  have  succeeded  in  explaining  all 
our  sacred  poetry  accordingly. 

The  historical  outlines  of  this  system  being  clear,  we  may  pro- 
ceed to  illustrate  it  by  a  few  instances  taken  more  or  less  at  ran- 
dom from  Prof.  Bickell's  work.  We  shall  give  the  transliterated 
Hebrew  text,  only  remarking  that  the  consonants  are  pronounced 
as  in  English,  the  pronunciation  of  the  vowels  being  like  the  con- 
tinental European  pronunciation: 

Psalm  150. 
Hallelu  el  bekodsho — Praise  ye  the  Lord  in  his  holy  place : 
Halliihu  birki  'uzzo — Praise  ye  him  in  the  firmament  of  his  power. 
Halluhu  big'bur6thar — Praise  ye  him  for  his  mighty  deeds  : 

Halliihu  K'robgudlehu — Praise  ye  him  according  to  the  multitude  of  his  greatness. 
Halluhu  b'theka'  shorar — Praise  ye  him  with  sound  of  trumpet : 
Halluhu  b'n6bel  v'kinnor — Praise  ye  him  with  psaltery  and  harp. 
Halluhu  b'thof  umachol — Praise  ye  him  with  timbrel  and  choir : 
Halluhu  b'minnim  v'uggab — Praise  ye  him  with  strings  and  organ. 
Halluhu  b'zilz'le  shama* — Praise  ye  him  on  high  sounding  cymbals  : 
Halluhu  b'zilz'le  th'rua' — Praise  ye  him  on  cymbals  of  joy. 
Kol  hann'shama  t'hallel  yah — Let  every  spirit  praise  the  Lord. 

We  notice,  at  once,  that  each  Hebrew  line  consists  of  seven 
syllables,  and  that  the  feet  are  of  the  iambic  movement.  The  psalm 
is,  therefore,  rightly  called  iambic  heptasyllabic.  Wherever  a  little 
accent,  curved  from  right  to  left,  is  placed  between  two  vowelless 
consonants,  the  intervening  vowel  of  the  Massoretic  text  is  sup- 
pressed, a  perfectly  allowable  process  according  to  the  canons  of 
Syriac  metre.  In  the  scanning  of  the  Psalms,  Bickell  found  it 
necessary  to  reject  in  this  way  about  1600  vowels  ;  he  had  to  omit, 
also,  1550  syllables  of  the  common  Massoretic  reading,  and  to 
add  about  1070.^  We  must,  however,  remember  that  in  many  of 
these  instances  the  change  is  owing  to  the  fact  that  two  gram- 
matical forms  express  the  same  relation.  Thus,  6  is  often  ex- 
changed with  ehu,  both  being  the  pronomial  affix  of  the  third 
person,  masculine,  singular.  The  biblical  parallel  passages,  too, 
serve  to  lessen  the  shock  we  experience  at  first  hearing  of  so  many 
changes.     The  17th  Psalm,  for  instance,  though  a  mere  repetition 

1  De  sacra  poesi  Heb.,  Lips.  1815,  p.  403  and  p.  699  ff. 

2  Le  livre  de  Job,  Paris,  1873. 

3  Innsbrucker  Theol.  Zeitch.,  1882,  p.  789  ff. 


American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

of  2  Kings,  22,  changes  ^6  words,  omits  19,  adds  15,  transposes  I, 
and  transposes,  also,  a  line.  Bickell,  in  scanning  Psalms  33,  34  and 
76,  changes  only  6  and  omits  6  words ;  in  Psalm  78,  1-50  (a),  he 
changes  4,  omits  13,  and  adds  3  words  ;  in  Psalms  105  and  26  he 
changes  3,  omits  12,  and  adds,  5  words  ;  in  Psalms  147-150,  and 
24,  7-10,  he  changes  4,  omits  4,  and  adds  5  words;  in  Deut.  32, 
1-35,  he  changes  5  and  omits  2  words,  and  transposes  a  line;  in 
Job  38,  2-39  and  15,  he  changes  5,  omits  3,  adds  4,  and  transposes 
I  word;  in  Proverbs  10,  i-ii  and  23,  he  changes  2  and  omits  I 
word.  It  must  be  remembered  that  each  of  these  seven  instances 
is  exactly  equal  to  Psalm  17  and  2  Kings  22,  i.e.,  consists  of  112 
heptasyllabic  lines,  and  that  proposed  emendations  which  do  not 
influence  the  metre  must  not  be  brought  as  arguments  against  the 
metrical  system  in  question.  On  the  whole,  then,  not  one-ninth 
of  the  number  of  changes  found  in  the  cited  parallel  passages  of 
the  Bible  is  required  to  render  possible  an  exact  scanning  of  the 
sacred  poems  according  to  the  rules  of  Syriac  metre. 

Setting  aside,  therefore,  all  anxiety  for  the  integrity  of  our  sacred 
text,  we  may  consider  a  few  more  instances,  illustrating  the  same 
metrical  principles.  Psalm  18,  8-1 5,  presents  a  beautiful  example 
of  compound  metre.  Each  stanza  consists  of  four  iambic  verses, 
the  first  and  third  of  which  are  heptasyllabic,  the  second  and  fourth 
quadrisyllable : 

1.  Torath  yahveh  temima 
Meshibath  nap'sh 
'Eduth  yahveh  ne'mana 
Machkimath  p'thi 

2.  Piqqude  yahveh  y'sharim 
Mesamm'che  leb. 
Mizvath  yahveh  beru6a 
M'irath  'enaim. 

1.  The  lau'  of  God  is  holy, 
Converting  souls ; 

The  word  of  God  is  faithful, 
Instructing  fools. 

2,  God's  justices  are  righteous, 
Rejoicing  hearts. 

The  law  of  God  is  lightsome, 
Enlightening  eyes. 

It  may  be  interesting  to  know  that  the  Syriac  poet  Cyrillonas 
has  employed  the  same  metre  and  stanza. 

In  the  last  place,  we  add  a  specimen  of  a  more  artificially  con- 
structed stanza  found  in  Psalm  5.  Each  stanza  consists  of  six 
iambic  lines,  the  first,  fourth,  and  fifth  being  heptasyllabic,  the  sec- 
ond quadrisyllabic,  the  third  hendecasyllabic,  the  sixth  euneasyl- 
labic.     The  Psalm  reads: 

'Marai  ha'zina,  yahveh 

Bina  h'gigi. 

Haqshiba  rq6l  shavi',  malki 

vel6hai ; 
Ki  ethpallel  el6cha. 
Yahveh,  boq'r  tishma  'q6li ; 
Boq'r  ^roch  Ifecha  vaazappe. 

Give  ear,  O  Lord,  to  my  words. 

And  hear  my  cry. 

My  king  and  God  !  O,  hear  the  voice 

of  prayer, 
My  prayer  to  thee  ascending. 
My  morning  prayer  hear  thou, 
At  morning,  when  I  stand  before  thee. 

Scripture  Poetry.  eg 

2    Ki  16  el  chaphez  rash"ta;  2.  Thou  art  not  God  of  evil, 

Lo  y'gurcha  ra'.  Sin  is  not  thine. 

Lo  yithyazz'bu  hol'lim  lenag'd  And  sinners  shall   not   dwell  before 

'enecha ;  present ; 

Sanetha  kol  po"le  av'n.  Thou  hatest  the  ungodly, 

Teabbed  dobre  chazab  ;  Destroyest  all  deceivers. 

Ish  damjm  v'emirma  y'tha'eb  yahveh.  God  hates  the  cruel  and  deceitful. 

Stanzas  like  these  invariably  remind  one  of  the  strophes  and 
antistrophes  of  Greek  choruses. 

We  must  not  imagine,  however,  that  all  difficulties  have  been 
successfully  overcome.  The  many  changes  of  the  Massoretic  text 
necessary  to  scan  the  sacred  poems  according  to  the  principles  of 
verse  just  indicated,  is  in  itself  a  serious  stumbling-block,  opposing 
the  progress  of  the  new  system  ;  the  difficulty  increases  when  a 
change  of  sense  is  necessary  that  influences  the  dogmatic  value  of 
a  passage.  If  the  words  of  Psalm  44,  7,  "Thy  throne,  O  God,  is 
for  ever  and  ever,"  from  which  St.  Paul^  draws  an  argument  for 
the  divinity  of  Christ,  have  to  be  changed  to  "  the  foundation  of 
thy  throne  is  firm ;  the  Lord  hath  strengthened  it  forever  and 
ever,"  as  Prof  Bickell  changes  them,  the  new  system  destroys  St. 
Paul's  argument,  and  must,  therefore,  be  abandoned.  Nor  can  we 
approve  of  the  plan  of  Father  Gietmann,^  who  allows  fewer  changes 
of  the  Massoretic  text,  but  does  not  insist  on  the  verse  divisions 
coinciding  with  the  sense  divisions.  Parallelism  would  thus  be 
destroyed.  If,  then,  the  canons  of  Syriac  metre  really  are  the 
laws  of  Hebrew  verse,  there  must  be  away  of  applying  them  with- 
out injuring  either  the  dogmatic  value  of  the  sacred  text  or  its 
beautiful  parallelism.  Let  us  hope  that  Professor  Bickell  may 
soon  be  able  to  analyze  all  Scripture  poems,  avoiding  both  incon- 
veniences. Meanwhile  we  must  be  grateful  to  the  special  students 
of  this  branch  for  the  light  they  have  thrown  on  both  sense  and 
beauty  of  the  inspired  writers  by  their  untiring  endeavors. 

1  Heb.  1,8.  2  De  re  metrica  Heb.,  Friburgi.  1880. 

6o  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 


Records  of  the  English  Province  SJ.     By  Henry  Foley,  S.J. 

English  Catholic  Hierarchy.     By  W.  Maziere  Brady.     Rome.     1877. 

Life  of  Bishop  Milner.     By  Provost  Husenbeth.     Dublin.     1862. 

History  of  the  Church  in  England.  By  Canon  Flanagan.  London.   1857. 

Historical  Memoirs.     By  Charles  Butler,  Esq.     2d  ed.    London.    1819. 

Supplementary  Memoirs.     By  Dr.  Milner.     London.     1820. 

Collections,  etc.     By  V.  Rev.  George  Oliver,  D.D.     London.     1857. 

Collectanea  S.J.     Exeter.     1838. 

Archdiocesan  Archives.     Baltimore. 

Catholic  Directory.     London,      1802. 

The  Life  and  Times  of  Archbishop  Carroll.    By  Dr.  John  G.  Shea.    New 

York.     1888. 
History  of  the  Royal  Society.    By  C.  R.  Weld,  London,  1837. 

IN  St.  Mary's  Seminary,  Baltimore,  is  preserved  a  Latin  docu- 
ment, endorsed  "  Certificate  of  Consecration  at  Lulworth 
Castle  of  J.  Bp.  of  Balf^  August  15th,  1790."'  This  year  will 
witness  the  first  centenary  of  the  erection  of  the  metropolitan 
See  of  the  United  States.  To  the  many  who  are  interested  in 
the  early  days  of  the  American  Church,  a  translation  of  this 
document,  together  with  some  details  illustrative  of  the  memorable 
scene  of  which  it  is  the  simple  record,  will,  we  hope,  be  not  un- 

Done  into  English,  the  certificate  is,  substantially,  as  follows : 

"  By  these  presents  we  testify  that,  assisted  by  the  Reverend 
Charles  Plowden  and  the  Reverend  James  Porter,  priests,  we  did, 
in  the  chapel  of  Lulworth  Castle,  Dorsetshire,  England,  on  Aug. 
15th,  1790,  the  Feast  of  the  Assumption  of  the  Blessed  Virgin, 
confer  Episcopal  consecration  upon  the  Reverend  John  Carroll, 
Bishop-elect  of  Baltimore,  the  Apostolic  Letter,  given  under  the 
seal  of  the  Fisherman  at  St.  Mary  Major's,  November  6th,  1789, 
having  been  read,  and  the  oath  having  been  taken  by  the  Prelate- 
elect,  according  to  the  Roman  Pontifical. 
Given  at  Lulworth,  August  17th,  1790. 

t     Charles  Walmesley,  Bp.  of  Rama,  V.A., 
t     Charles  Plowden,  Assistant-priest, 
t     James  Porter,  Assistant-priest, 

Charles  Forrester,  priest,  Missionary-Apostolic, 
Thomas  Stanley,  priest." 

1  It  has  recently  been  printed,  in  Dr.  John  Gilmary  Shea's  new  volume. 

Luhvoi'ih   Chapel,  Bishop  Carroll  and  Bishop   Walmesley.    6i 

At  the  time  of  Dr.  Carroll's  election  to  the  Episcopate,  his  friend 
and  former  associate  in  the  Society  of  Jesus,  the  Reverend  Charles 
Plowden,  was  resident  at  Lulworth  Castle,  in  the  capacity  of  tutor 
to  the  sons  of  the  proprietor.  As  soon  as  he  got  news  of  the  ap- 
pointment, and  he  got  them  very  early.  Father  Plowden  wrote  to 
the  Bishop-elect. 

After  tendering  his  congratulations,  he  goes  on  to  say :  "  We 
wish  to  know  where  you  are  to  receive  the  sacred  character.  We 
conceive  that,  considering  the  speedy  and  easy  communication 
with  this  country,  you  will  prefer  a  voyage  hither  to  a  trip  to  Que- 
bec or  Havana.  France  is  one  universal  scene  of  riot  and  confu- 
sion. Mr.  Weld  orders  me  to  invite  you  to  Lulworth  Castle, 
where  he  will  assemble  three  bishops  to  meet  you.  He  will  think 
his  castle  and  new  chapel  honored  by  the  consecration  therein  of 
the  first  bishop  of  North  America." 

This  letter  bears  no  date. 

November  ist,  1789,  Fr.  Plowden  writes  :  "  The  present  vacancy 
in  the  See  of  Havana  will,  we  hope,  be  an  additional  motive  for 
accepting  our  invitation  to  Lulworth,  which  is  again  earnestly 

April  4th,  1790,  he  says:  **  I  expect  news  of  the  arrival  of  your 
Bulls  by  the  January  packet,  and  of  the  measures  which  you  mean 
to  take  for  your  consecration.  We  hope  to  receive  your  first 
Episcopal  benediction  in  this  chapel." 

Dr.  Carroll,  having  decided  to  seek  consecration  in  England, 
sailed  thither  early  in  the  summer  of  1790.  In  London,  where  he 
remained  some  weeks  after  his  arrival,  he  received  a  letter  from 
Father  Plowden,  who  says :  "Mr.  Weld  desires  that  you  will  not 
put  yourself  to  the  expense  of  a  pectoral  cross,  as  he  has  one  ready 
to  present  to  you  which  he  hopes  you  will  accept  and  like.  It  is 
rich,  curious  and  respectable,  formerly  the  property  of  the  last 
Abbot  of  Colchester." 

On  August  3d  Father  Plowden  again  writes  :  "  Mr.  Weld  begs 
of  you  the  favor  to  borrow  two  Pontificals  in  London,  and  bring 
them  with  you.  Bishop  Walmesley  will  be  here  next  Thursday  to 
stay  some  weeks.     You  need  not,  therefore,  hurry  yourself. 

But,  three  days  later,  he  says :  "  Bishop  Walmesley  arrived 
yesterday.  He  is  not  well,  and  seems  rather  alarmed  about  the 
state  of  his  health.  He  desires  me  to  tell  you  '  that,  not  knowing 
what  may  happen,'  he  wishes  you  to  arrive  at  the  Castle,  and  be 
consecrated  as  early  as  may  suit  your  convenience.  I  can  only  say 
that  the  old  Bishop  wishes  that  no  time  be  lost."  ^ 

The   ceremony  of  consecration  was  performed  nine  days  later. 

1  Dr.  Walmesley  was  the  senior  Vicar- Apostolic,  and  Lulworth  was  in  his  district. 

62  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

on  the  Feast  of  the  Assumption,  with  a  degree  of  splendor  unusual 
in  those  days.  It  was  only  in  private  chapels,  like  those  at  Lul- 
worth  and  Wardour,  that  the  vestments  and  other  appurtenances 
requisite  for  such  a  function  were  to  be  had.  Even  High  Mass 
was  rarely  seen  outside  of  London.  Mr.  Weld  charged  himself 
with  all  the  expense  incident  to  the  occasion.  His  generosity  is 
all  the  more  worthy  of  remembrance  from  the  fact  that  the  houses 
of  most  of  the  distinguished  Catholics  in  England  were  at  that 
time  closed  against  the  Vicars-Apostolic. 

Mr.  Weld  was  not  able  to  assemble  three  prelates  for  the  occa- 
sion, despite  his  promise  to  do  so.  Of  the  four  Vicars,  two  had 
recently  died,  and  the  third  was  in  poor  health.  In  accordance 
with  the  tenor  of  Dr.  Carroll's  Bulls,  Bishop  Walmesley  was  as- 
sisted by  Fathers  Plowden  and  Porter,  some  time  members  of  the 
suppressed  Society  of  Jesus.^  Before  the  ceremony  began,  Father 
Plowden  delivered  his  memorable  address,  a  discourse  in  every 
way  worthy  the  solemn  occasion  that  called  it  forth.  The  preacher 
had  grasped  the  full  import  of  the  scene  about  to  be  enacted.  To 
our  generation,  which  beholds  the  fulfilment  of  what  he  foretold, 
his  words  seem  little  short  of  prophetic. 

It  was  agreed  upon  between  Mr.  Weld  and  the  Bishop-elect  that 
the  proceedings  of  the  day  were  not  to  be  made  public.  Never- 
theless, Father  Plowden's  sermon  soon  appeared  in  the  local  news- 
papers. A  letter  of  his  to  Bishop  Carroll  dated  Lulworth,  Septem- 
ber 5th,  1790,  explains  how  this  came  about.  The  discourse  was 
published  without  the  preacher's  knowledge  or  consent.  Bishop 
Walmesley,  owing  to  his  deafness,  had  been  unable  to  follow  the 
speaker,  so,  when  the  ceremony  was  over,  he  sent  Father  Forrester 
to  borrow  Father  Plowden's  manuscript  for  him.  Before  it  was 
returned,  somebody  surreptitiously  made  a  copy. 

The  chapel  of  St.  Mary  of  the  Assumption  at  Lulworth  is  the 
sanctuary  where  our  hierarchy  took  its  immediate  rise.  It  stands  in 
the  park,  a  short  distance  from  the  Castle.  A  description  thereof  is 
given  in  Hutchins's  History  of  Dorset.  But  that  description  is, 
salva  reverentia^  scarcely  satisfactory.  The  following,  drawn  from  a 
study  of  plans  and  photographs  kindly  furnished  the  writer  by 
Miss  Agnes  F.  Weld,  of  Lulworth  Castle,  will,  perhaps,  convey  a 
better  notion  of  the  building  than  is  afforded  by  Hutchins.     It  is 

1  In  his  edition  of  Palmer's  "  Church  of  Christ,"  New  York,  1841,  Bishop  Whit- 
tingham,  of  Maryland,  says,  apropos  of  Dr.  Carroll's  appointment  to  the  See  of  Balti- 
more :  "  There  are  very  serious  difficulties  affecting  the  regularity  and  even  the  validity 
of  the  ordination  of  the  above-mentioned  Carroll,  and  all  the  Romish  clergy  of  the 
United  States  derived  from  him,  in  consequence  of  his  ordination  having  been  per- 
formed by  only  one  titular  bishop,  Dr.  Walmesley,  who  appears  to  have  labored  under 
a  similar  irregularity  or  .deficiency  himself." — vol.  i.,  p.  286,  note. 

LiLkuurth   Chapel,  Bishop  Carroll  and  Bishop   Walmesley.     63 

about  seventy-six  feet  long  by  sixty-one  feet  wide.  Externally, 
the  central  feature  of  the  structure  is  a  rectangle  forty  feet  long  by 
about  forty-five  feet  wide,  crowned  by  a  dome  and  lantern.  From 
the  cornice  at  each  angle  springs  a  square  turret  capped  by  a  large 
stone  vase.  The  two  transepts  are  of  the  same  height  as  the  ker- 
nel of  the  building,  are  in  ground-plan  sections  of  circles,  and  have 
domed  roofs  intersecting  the  central  dome  near  its  base. 

What  one,  judging  from  outside  appearances,  would  take  to  be 
the  altar-end,  is  really  the  vestibule.  This,  like  the  transepts,  is  a 
section  of  a  circle,  but  of  greater  radius.  The  east  end,  where  the 
sanctuary  and  sacristy  are  located,  is  rectangular,  about  twenty 
feet  long  by  thirty-two  feet  wide.  The  chancel  is  a  semicircle  with 
a  radius  of  twelve  feet.  But,  as  the  altar-rail  is  placed  some  little 
distance  in  front  of  the  chancel-arch,  the  sanctuary  is  sufficiently 
roomy.  Like  the  vestibule  and  transepts,  the  chancel  has  a  domed 
roof  Its  walls  are  decorated  in  the  Byzantine  style,  and  the  church 
is  ornamented  by  fine  paintings  brought  over  from  Italy.  The 
space  roofed  by  the  central  dome  is  the  main  auditorium.  The 
altar  is  magnificent.  Bronze  and  gold,  porphyry  and  rose  alabaster, 
the  rarest  and  most  beautiful  marbles  are  lavished  upon  it. 

The  chapel  is  built  of  cut  stone,  and  is  of  two  stories.  Over  the 
porch,  on  the  eastern  gable,  is  carved  the  armorial  shield  of  the 

It  is  of  Romanesque  design.  Dr.  Milner,  who  ought  to  have 
known  better,  calls  it  "  Grecian."  Though,  of  course,  incompara- 
bly smaller,  the  chapel  much  resembles,  in  general  outline,  the  Cathe- 
dral church  at  Baltimore.  Cardinal  Gibbons  told  the  writer  that, 
on  his  visit  to  Lul worth  some  years  ago,  he  was  quite  satisfied  that 
Dr.  Carroll,  when  settling  the  plans  of  the  Cathedral,  was  guided 
by  memories  of  the  shrine  where  he  received  the  Episcopal  character. 

The  corner-stone  of  the  chapel  was  laid  by  Thomas  Weld,  the 
pious  and  munificent  master  of  Lulworth  Castle,  on  Candlemas- 
Day,  1786.  Under  the  stone  was  placed  a  brass  plate  bearing  a 
Latin  inscription,  composed  by  Father  Giovenazzi,  S.J.,  the  then 
librarian  of  the  Altieri  Palace.  There  is  a  family  tradition,  some- 
what obscure,  however,  that  the  founder  of  the  chapel  was  also  its 
architect.  His  portrait  at  Lulworth,  which  represents  him  hold- 
ing the  plans  of  the  building  in  his  hand,  would  seem  to  confirm 
the  tradition.  But  this,  our  informant  adds,  is  uncertain.  In  its 
day  St.  Mary's,  Lulworth,  was,  with  perhaps  a  single  exception, 
the  finest  place  of  Catholic  worship  in  England. 

Charles  Walmesley,  O.S.B.,  titular  Bishop  of  Rama,  and  Vicar- 
Apostolic  of  the  Western   District,  is  the  link  which  binds  the 

1  King  George  III.  twice  visited  the  chapel.  "I  speak,"  suid  Dr.  Milner,  in  one 
of  the  sermons  he  delivered  at  Lulworth,  "  within  walls,  equally  known  to  and  equally 
honored  by  Pius  VI.  and  George  III." 

64  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

Church  of  the  United  States  to  the  Church  of  St.  Austin  and  St. 
Gregory.  He  edified  his  contemporaries  by  his  holy  life.  His 
memory  was  long  held  in  benediction  by  those  who  were  wit- 
nesses of  his  zeal  and  virtue.  Moreover,  he  was  celebrated  through- 
out Europe  for  his  literary  and  scientific  performances.  To-day, 
his  career,  both  as  scientist  and  priest,  is  quite  unknown.  Even 
Father  Brennan  makes  no  mention  of  him  in  his  valuable  book. 
What  Catholics  have  done  for  Science. 

Some  fifty  years  since,  the  publisher  of  the  second  American  edi- 
tion of  Dr.  Walmesley's  History  of  the  Church  undertook  to  sup- 
ply a  biographical  sketch  of  the  venerable  author.  But,  despite  solici- 
tous inquiries,  he  was  able  to  collect  only  a  few  facts  of  interest 
relating  to  him.  The  compiler  of  the  present  sketch,  while  per- 
haps more  successful,  has  experienced  no  less  difficulty  than  did 
the  editor  of  1834,  for  the  Bishop's  life  was  quite  uneventful.  '*  His 
firmness  in  resisting  innovation,  his  ability  and  integrity,  his  unre- 
mitting attention  to  official  duties,"  entitled  his  memory  to  the 
grateful  respect  and  admiration  of  those  who  knew  him.  But  his 
work  was  mainly  diocesan  or  parochial.  The  bulk  of  his  corre- 
spondence relates  to  such  matters,  in  which  there  is  little  to  interest 
the  ordinary  reader.  In  Rome  one  would  hope  to  find  generous 
materials.  But  in  the  Propaganda  Archives  only  two  of  Dr. 
Walmesley's  communications  are  to  be  found.  Both  are  holo- 
graphs, are  written  in  large,  clear,  masculine  characters,  and  are 
signed  "  Charles  Eveque  de  Rama."  All  that  can  be  gleaned 
from  the  records  of  the  English  College  is  briefly  this  :  He  was 
consecrated  in  the  Sodality  chapel  there  in  December,  1756,  and 
was  for  many  years  Vicar-Apostolic  of  Western  England. 

He  was  born  of  ancient  and  pious  stock  at  Westwood  House, 
Lancashire,  England,  January  13th,  1722.  Two  of  his  brothers 
became  priests  of  the  Society  of  Jesus.  He  received  his  early 
education  in  the  Anglo-Benedictine  College  of  St.  Edmund's,  Rue 
St.  Jacques,  Paris.  Here,  at  the  age  of  seventeen,  he,  after  one 
year's  novitiate,  was  professed  a  monk  of  the  order  of  St.  Benedict. 
He  was  ordained  in  Paris,  but  just  when,  we  have  not  been  able  to 

Ten  years  after  his  profession  he  was  chosen  Prior  of  St.  Edmund's. 
After  completing  his  quadrennium,  he  was  summoned  to  Rome  as 
Procurator  of  his  order.  Meanwhile  he  began  to  be  known  by 
reason  of  his  singular  ability  in  mathematics.  In  1748,  the  year 
preceding  his  election  to  the  priorate,  he  had  won  the  applause  of 
the  French  savants  by  his  essay,  La  Theorie  du  Mouvement  des 
Cometes.  Together  with  this  was  published  his  commentary  on 
Robert  Cotes's  Harmonia^  an  important  contribution  to  the  early 
stages  of  Calculus.     In  the  following  year  he  published,  also  at 

Lidworth   Chapel,  Bishop   Carroll  and  Bishop   Walmesley.    65 

Paris,  La  Theorie  du  Moiivement  des  Apsides.  He  was  chosen 
Fellow  of  the  Royal  Society  of  Great  Britain,  November  ist,  1750, 
on  the  recommendation  of  such  men  as  Buffon,  Jussieu  and  D'Alem- 
bert.  His  certificate  calls  him  a  gentleman  of  very  distinguished 
merit  and  learning.  When  the  "  Act  for  regulating  the  com- 
niencement  of  the  year  and  for  correcting  the  calendar  now  in 
use"  was  being  drafted,  Pere  Walmesley's  assistance  was  sought 
by  the  Government,  at  the  suggestion  of  the  Royal  Society,  backed 
by  the  personal  influence  of  the  president  thereof,  Lord  Maccles- 
field. But  no  mention  of  the  monk's  share  in  the  change  of  style 
was  made  in  the  prints  of  that  day.  The  change  from  the  Julian 
to  the  Gregorian  calendar  shocked  the  civic  and  religious  preju- 
dices of  the  English,  and  the  fact  that  a  priest  had  anything  to  do 
with  the  Act  would,  if  divulged,  have  rendered  its  passage  more 
odious  than  it  really  was.  In  1755  Pere  Walmesley  made  his 
first  contribution  to  the  memoirs  of  the  Royal  Academy  of  Berlin, 
of  which,  as  well  as  of  the  Institute  of  Bologna,  he  had,  mean- 
while, been  made  a  member.  He  had  now  achieved  a  continental 
reputation  as  a  man  of  science.  But  his  scientific  pursuits  did  not 
detract  from  the  regular  and  edifying  performance  of  his  duties  as 
priest  and  religious. 

In  the  spring  of  1756,  in  his  thirty-fifth  year,  he  was  elevated  to 
the  episcopal  dignity.  The  venerable  Bishop  York,  needing  a 
coadjutor,  specially  desired  Pere  Walmesley's  appointment,  he 
being  "  perfectly  sound  in  body,  and  of  pleasing  and  captivating 
manners."  On  the  6th  of  July  following.  Cardinal  Spinelli,  Prefect 
of  Propaganda,  wrote  thus  from  Parma  to  the  President-General 
of  the  Benedictines: 

"  The  election  of  Father  Walmesley  as  coadjutor  to  Bishop 
York  is  no  less  an  acknowledgment  of  his  merit  than  a  mark  of 
the  esteem  in  which  your  congregation  is  held.  For  myself,  I  am 
happy  to  have  contributed  towards  it,  and  I  do  not  doubt  that  the 
new  prelate  will  equal  the  expectations  that  have  been  formed  of 
his  wisdom  and  virtue." 

The  *'  new  prelate  "  was  consecrated  in  Rome,  December  21st, 
1756,  by  Cardinal  Marcello  Federigo  Lante,  the  same,  be  it  said, 
who  gave  episcopal  consecration  to  Clement  XIV.  after  his  elec- 
tion to  the  Pontificate.  In  the  following  year  Bishop  Walmesley 
took  up  his  residence  at  Bath  with  the  Benedictine  missionary 
who  served  the  faithful  in  that  city.  In  1764,  on  the  retirement  of 
Bishop  York,  he  became  Vicar- Apostolic  of  the  West.  In  1780, 
during  the  riots  at  Bath,  the  new  mission-chapel,  the  presbytery, 
the  registers  of  the  mission,  the   diocesan  archives,  the  Bishop's 

VOL.  XIV. — 5 

66  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

library  and  some  valuable  manuscripts  were  utterly  destroyed.^ 
It  is  consoling  to  know  that  the  leader  in  this  disgraceful  affair 
was,  presently,  capitally  tried,  condemned  and  hanged. 

In  1787  Dr.  VValmesley  took  a  house  of  his  own  at  Bath,  where 
he  resided  till  his  death. 

At  the  outset  of  his  episcopal  career  his  duties,  as  coadjutor, 
did  not  withdraw  the  Bishop  from  his  beloved  mathematics.  The 
learned  author  of  the  Historical  Memoirs  of  English  Catholics,  etc., 
is  mistaken  when  he  says  that  at,  or  soon  after,  his  elevation  to  the 
episcopate,  Dr.  Walmesley  gave  up  entirely  his  scientific  researches. 
But  Mr.  Butler  speaks  to  the  purpose  when  he  reproaches  the 
English  Benedictines  that  they  have  not  given  to  the  world  an  ac- 
count of  the  prelate's  attainments.  Such  men  as  Sir  John  Leslie, 
Professor  Playfair,  of  Edinburgh,  and  the  late  Professor  Augustus 
De  Morgan  have  written  of  him  in  terms  of  admiration.  And 
Bailly,  the  celebrated  astronomer-mayor  of  Paris,  speaks  repeat- 
edly and  appreciatively  of  his  brother-savant,  Pere  Walmesley,  in 
his  Histoirc  de  V Astronoinie  Moderne  (Paris,  1787). 

In  1758  the  Bishop  made  his  second  contribution  to  the  memoirs 
of  the  Berlin  Academy — a  treatise  De  la  M'ethode  des  Differences 
et  la  Sommation  des  Series, 

It  will  appear,  on  a  careful  examination  of  the  Phdosophical 
Transactio7ts,  that  Mr.  Charles  Walmesley,  F.R.S.,  sent  in  but  four 
papers  during  his  forty-seven  years  of  membership  in  the  Royal 
Society.  It  will,  furthermore,  appear  that  Brady,  Oliver  and 
M.  Le  Glay  are  mistaken  when  they  say  that  some  of  his  astro- 
nomical papers  were  inserted  in  the  Philosophical  Transactions  of 
1745  and  the  two  succeeding  years.  Of  the  four  papers  just  al- 
luded to>  the  first  two  were  sent  from  Rome  to  the  Astronomer- 
Royal  about  a  month  before  their  author's  consecration.  Both  are 
written  in  Latin,  are  illustrated  by  complicated  diagrams,  and 
together  occupy  fifty-three  pages  quarto  ;  one  is  entitled,  "  ILssay 
on  the  Precession  of  the  Equinoxes  and  the  Mutation  of  the 
Earth's  Axis,"  The  other  is,  "A  Theory  of  the  Irregularities  that 
may  be  Occasioned  in  the  Annual  Movement  of  the  Earth  by  the 
Action  of  Jupiter  and  Saturn."  Accompanying  them  is  an  intro- 
ductory letter  in  which  the  author  explains  his  choice  of  the  geo- 
metrical method  of  proof  in  preference  to  the  method  of  Calculus. 
The  third  paper  is  in  Latin,  and  was  forwarded  to  the  Astrono- 
mer-Royal from  Bath,  1758.  It  is  headed,  "Of  the  Irregularities 
of  a.SateUite  Arising  from  the  Spheroidal   Figure  of  its  Primary 

1  It  now  appears  that  the  mission  library  at  Bath  was  not  entirely  destroyed  in  the 
fire  of  1780.  A  number  of  books,  formerly  belonging  to  it,  and  having  Bishop 
Walmesley's  autograph  on  the  fly-leaves,  turned  up  lately  in  a  bookseller's  shop  in 

Liilworth  Chapel^  Bishop   Carroll  and  Bishop  Walmesley.    67 

Planet."     The   Bishop  apologized   for  the    shortcomings  of  this 
paper  on  the  ground  of  ill-health  and  press  of  business. 

The  fourth  and  last  and  most  voluminous  paper — it  covers  fifty- 
seven  pages,  quarto— is  a  treatise  "  On  the  Irregularities  in  the 
Planetary  Motions  Caused  by  the  Mutual  Attraction  of  the  Plan- 
ets." Like  the  other  three,  it  is  written  in  Latin.  It  was  dis- 
patched from  Bath  to  Dr.  Morton,  Secretary  of  the  Royal  Society, 
on  November  21st,  1761. 

Some  time  after  this  date,  we  know  not  when,  Dr.  Walmesley 
renounced  the  study  of  mathematics.  The  following  occurrence 
is  said  to  have  occasioned  the  renunciation.  One  day,  while  at 
the  altar,  he  found  himself  so  absorbed  in  the  consideration  of  a 
problem  that  had  suggested  itself  to  him  as  to  be  tracing  diagrams 
on  the  sacred  linens  with  the  paten.  In  deep  contrition  he  at  once 
forswore  science.  Thenceforward  he  gave  himself  to  studies 
purely  ecclesiastical,  especially  to  the  interpretation  of  Scripture. 
The  first  fruit  of  his  new  investigations  was  his  History  of  the 
Chtirch,  published  in  1771,  under  the  pseudonym  of**  Signor  Pas- 
torini."  It  is  an  elucidation  of  the  Apocalypse.  It  proceeds  upon 
the  theory  that  that  mysterious  book  is  a  summary  of  the  Divine 
economy  regarding  the  Church  from  her  foundation  to  her  final 
triumphant  estate  in  Heaven.  The  work  was,  in  its  day,  very  popu- 
lar, and  is  still  in  demand.  An  American  edition  was  issued  as 
early  as  1807. 

According  to  M.  Le  Glay,  "  Correspondant  de  I'lnstitut  "  at 
Douai,  the  History  won  for  its  author  from  the  Faculty  of  Paris  the 
rank  and  privileges  of  a  Doctor  of  the  Sorbonne.  Maziere  Brady 
seems  to  think  that  Bishop  Walmesley  possessed  this  distinction 
before  his  elevation  to  the  episcopate.  But  Le  Glay  says  that  he 
gathered  the  facts  contained  in  his  sketch  from  the  monks  of  St. 
Gregory  at  Douai,  and  from  unpublished  letters.  "  Pastorini" 
was  translated  into  Latin,  F'rench,  Italian  and  German.  Nay,  two 
German  versions  were  made.  But  only  Father  Goldhagen's  was 
printed.     The  history  of  the  other  is  interesting. 

In  1778  Maur  Heatley,  Abbot  of  Lambspring,  wrote  as  follows 
to  the  Prior  of  St.  Edmund's  at  Paris : 

"Some  time  ago  I  translated  '*  Pastorini  "  into  High  German; 
but  our  bishop  would  not  allow  it  to  be  printed  in  this  diocese 
(Hildesheim).  He  objected  much  to  the  liberties  taken  by  the 
author  in  his  arbitrary  explanations  of  the  Apocalypse  and  ancient 
prophets,  and  desired  me  to  have  no  hand  in  the  printing  of  it. 
Wherefore,  in  my  opinion,  it  would  be  more  advisable  and  answer 
all  purposes  to  have  it  printed  at  Strasburg,  whence  it  would  go 
through  the  whole  empire  by  the  different  booksellers  at  Mayence, 
Frankfort,  Bamberg,  etc. ;  if  I  can  promote  the  affair  with  prudence 
I  shall  be  ever  ready  to  serve  you  or  Mr.  Walmesley." 

58  American  Catholic  Qtiarterly  Review, 

Abbe  Feller  thought  better  of  "  Pastorini "  than  did  the  Bishop 
of  Hildesheim.  Writing  in  1786,  he  declares  that  the  book  is  the 
only  good  comment  on  the  Apocalypse  that  England  had  till  then 
produced.  He  calls  it  a  learned  and  edifying  performance,  and 
says  that  the  English  nation  is  indebted  to  the  author  for  his  part 
in  putting  down  the  theories  of  King  James  and  Newton.  Learned 
and  edifying  the  book  unquestionably  is.  It  was  used  by  the  mis- 
sionaries in  this  country  more  than  a  century  ago  with  happiest 
results.  Still  we  cannot  help  thinking  that  "  Signor  Pastorini  " 
is  now  and  then  sufficiently  extravagant.  •  His  book  occasioned 
a  curious  bit  of  Irish  history.  Dr.  Doyle,  the  celebrated  Bishop  of 
Kildare  and  Leighlin,  had,  after  strenuous  efforts,  almost  succeeded 
in  extirpating  Ribbonism  from  his  diocese.  But  in  1822  a  new 
edition  of"  Pastorini  "  was  published  in  Dublin.  Somebody  called 
the  attention  of  the  Ribbon  leaders  to  an  obscure  prediction,  or 
rather  calculation,  contained  in  the  ninth  chapter,  to  the  effect  that 
the  fifth  vial  of  Divine  wrath  was  soon  to  be  poured  out  upon  the 
Protestant  world.  The  report  was  industriously  circulated,  and  the 
lodges  began  to  revive  in  consequence.  So  great  did  the  evil  be- 
come that  "  J.  K.  L."  judged  it  necessary  to  rebuke  the  popular 
credulity  in  his  celebrated  Pastoral  of  1822  against  the  Ribbonmen. 
In  1778  EzekieVs  Vision  Explained  was  brought  out.  Writing 
on  March  i8th  of  that  year,  the  Bishop  says: 

"I  am  just  now  publishing  a  small  performance,  viz.,  an  explan- 
ation of  the  first  chapters  of  the  prophecy  of  Ezekiel.  It  has  cost 
me  a  good  deal  of  meditation  and  pains  at  different  times,  for  it  has 
been  for  some  few  years  past  the  subject  of  my  thoughts.  As  to 
the  merit  of  it,  I  leave  it  to  take' its  chances."  In  October  of  the 
same  year  he  writes :  "  Critics  may  make  whatever  objection  they 
choose  to  my  books,  and  welcome.  But  I  shall  not  take  it  upon 
myself  to  answer  them.  The  task  would  be  endless.  I  shall  leave 
my  works  to  take  care  of  themselves." 

Almost  the  only  trying  episode  in  the  Bishop's  life  was  the  con- 
test which,  with  his  brother  vicars,  he  waged  against  the  Catholic 
Committee.  His  conduct  in  that  unfortunate  business  was  such 
as  to  merit  for  him  the  title  of  "  The  Athanasius  of  the  English 
Catholic  Church." 

In  1783  five  laymen,  without  commission  from  any  one,  consti- 
tuted themselves  a  committee  to  manage  the  affairs  of  the  Catho- 
lics of  England.  Their  purpose  was  to  effect  the  civil  and  relig- 
ious emancipation  of  their  co-religionists,  and,  in  particular,  to  do 
away  with  the  then  existing  system  of  Church  government  by 
vicars-apostolic.  The  vain  and  presumptuous  Charles  Butler,  of 
Lincoln's  Inn,  was  the  secretary  of  this  junta.  Beyond  publish- 
ing their  programme,  the  gentlemen  of  the  committee  did  nothing 
for  four  years.     At  the  end  of  that  time  they  issued  a  circular  let- 

Lulworth  Chapel,  Bishop  Carroll  and  Bishop  Walmesley,    69 

ter  to  their  Catholic  countrymen  containing  some  remarks  little 
short  of  schismatical  anent  the  institution  of  the  vicars-apostolic. 
The  laity  looked  with  distrust  upon  the  proceedings  of  the  organ- 
ization, seeing  that  the  clergy  were  excluded  from  its  delibera- 
tions. To  remove  this  impression,  two  bishops,  the  vicar-apos- 
tolic of  the  London  District  and  the  coadjutor  of  the  Midland 
District,  were,  together  with  the  Rev.  Joseph  Wilks,  the  Benedic- 
tine missionary  at  Bath,  invited  to  membership  by  the  committee. 
The  first  mentioned  prelate  afterwards  said  that  he  joined  to  act  as 
a  check  upon  their  doings. 

In  order  to  prepare  the  mind  of  the  British  public  against  their 
intended  application  to  Parliament,  the  gentlemen  of  the  Committee 
laid  before  the  Catholics  of  England  for  their  signatures  the  so- 
called  "  Protestation  and  Declaration  " — a  solemn  disclaimer  of 
principles  vulgarly  supposed  to  be  part  of  the  faith  of  Catholics. 
This  instrument,  which  purported  to  be  drawn  up  by  a  Protestant 
nobleman,  was  full  of  errors,  grammatical,  logical,  and  theological 
The  four  vicars  at  first  refused  to  sign  it ;  but  they  finally  con- 
sented to  do  so  after  certain  modifications  had  been  made.  Bishop 
Walmesley  subsequently  withdrew  his  signature,  complaining  that 
he  had  been  tricked  into  subscribing.  In  round  numbers  only 
about  1600  Catholics  signed  the  "  Protestation." 

At  the  suggestion  of  Protestant  friends,  the  Committee  now 
proceeded  to  transform  the  "  Protestation "  into  a  "  Protestation 
Oath"  to  be  incorporated  in  the  Bill  of  Relief  which  they  were  to 
introduce  into  Parliament.  The  "  Oath  "  had  all  the  errors  of  the 
original  **  Protestation,"  and  others  beside.  To  subscribe  to  this 
document  was  bad  enough,  but  the  "Oath"  was  too  much  for  the 
consciences  of  the  faithful.  To  make  matters  worse,  the  Bill  of 
Relief  was  so  worded  as  to  benefit  only  such  Catholics  as  would  in 
a  court  of  justice  declare  themselves  "Protesting  Catholic  Dis- 
senters." The  Vicars-Apostolic,  though  ostentatiously  ignored 
by  the  Committee,  were  watching  closely  all  these  strange  pro- 
ceedings. They  now  judged  it  time  to  speak  out.  At  Bishop 
Walmesley's  invitation  they  met  in  synod  at  Hammersmith.  An 
Encyclical  Letter  condemning  the  Oath  was  the  result  of  their 
deliberations.  In  his  own — the  Western — District  Bishop  Walmes- 
ley followed  up  the  Encyclical  with  a  Pastoral  explanatory  of  its 
provisions.  Joseph  Wilks,  the  missionary  at  Bath,  already  men- 
tioned as  a  member  of  the  Committee,  not  only  refused  to  read  the 
letters  to  his  flock,  but  spoke  publicly  against  the  synod..  Show- 
ing himself  deaf  to  all  expostulation,  he  was  suspended  by  Bishop 
Walmesley  in  the  following  terms  : 

"  As  you  have  evidently  refused  submission  to  the  ordinances 
of  the  Apostolic  Vicars,  if  before  or  on  Sunday  next,  the  26th 
instant,  you  do  not  make  to  me  satisfactory  submission,  I  declare 

JO  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

you  suspended  from  the  exercise  of  all  missionary  faculties  and 
ecclesiastical  functions  in  my  district. 

"  Let  this  one  admonition  suffice  for  all.  Carolus  Ramaten., 

After  a  few  months  of  contumacy  Wilks  submitted,  and  was 
restored.  But  having  written  a  letter  explaining  away  his  sub- 
mission, he  was  soon  deprived  of  his  faculties  for  a  second  time. 
Dr.  Walmesley's  action  in  this  matter  occasioned,  on  the  part  of 
Wilks's  friends,  a  tremendous  uproar,  the  echoes  whereof  did  not 
die  out  for  several  years.  Prominent  gentlemen  and  ladies  strove 
in  vain  to  induce  the  Bishop  to  reverse  his  sentence.  Whereupon 
certain  priests,  known  as  the  Staffordshire  clergy,  bound  them- 
selves to  make  the  suspended  priest's  quarrel  their  own.  But  all 
such  interference  failed  of  its  purpose.  For  Dr.  Walmesley's  con- 
duct was  applauded  by  the  other  vicars  and  by  the  Holy  See. 

Not  many  months  after  the  issue  of  the  first  Encyclical,  two  of 
the  vicars  concerned  in  its  issue  died.  Butler  and  his  associates 
schemed  vigorously  to  secure  the  appointment  of  friends  of  the  Com- 
mittee to  the  vacant  positions.  The  lengths  to  which  they  went,  or 
proposed  to  go,  are  astonishing.  But  the  Holy  See  rebuked  their 
impertinence  by  appointing  Drs.  Gibson  and  Douglas :  which  action 
nearly  caused  a  schism.  Thomas  Weld  invited  the  new  prelates  to 
come  and  be  consecrated  at  Lulworth.  And  there,  December  5, 
1790,  Bishop  Walmesley  gave  consecration  to  Dr.  Gibson,  who  two 
weeks  later  performed  the  same  solemn  service  for  Dr.  Douglas. 

The  Committee  being  still  defiant,  Dr.  Walmesley  and  the  two 
new  vicars  prepared,  before  leaving  Lulworth,  a  fresh  condemna- 
tion of  the  "Oath."  But  before  publishing  it  they  made  a  last  and 
vain  attempt  at  pacification.  The  new  Encyclical  was  answered 
with  a  scandalous,  nay,  blasphemous  "  Protest."  Then  the  Bishops 
resolved  to  fight  the  Bill  in  Parliament.  Dr.  Milner  was  deputed 
to  make  interest  with  the  members.  So  well  did  he  succeed  that 
when  the  Bill  was  brought  in,  decisive  action  was  postponed  on 
the  ground  that  it  did  not  voice  the  sentiments  of  the  Catholic 
body.  The  Government  chose  to  hearken  to  the  conscientious 
voice  of  the  Vicars-Apostolic  rather  than  to  the  clamors  of  the 
Committee.  Nor  was  the  Bill  passed  till  the  obnoxious  neologism, 
"  Protesting  Catholic  Dissenters,"  had  been  withdrawn,  and  the 
still  more  obnoxious  *'  Oath  "  discarded.  During  this  long  strug- 
gle the  old  Bishop  used  to  say :  "  I  have  asked  my  Master  that  this 
bad  Oath  may  not  pass,  and  He  will  hear  my  prayers."  That  the 
Catholics  of  England  have  kept  their  old  and  honorable  designa- 
tion before  the  law,  is  due  beyond  any  one  else  to  Bishop  Charles 
Walmesley.  He  did  not  live  to  see  the  end  of  the  troubles  of  the 
Church  in  England.  The  system  of  lay  interference  in  the  eccle- 
siastical affairs  of  the  English  Catholics,  inaugurated  by  Butler  and 

Lulworth  Chapel,  Bishop  Carroll  and  Bishop   Walmesley.    yi 

his  friends  in  1783,  was  for  almost  forty  years  afterward  a  source 
of  disorders,  divisions,  and  irreligion. 

Bishop  Walmesley  closed  his  long  and  well-spent  life  by  a  happy 
exit  at  Bath  on  the  25th  of  November,  1797,  in  the  75th  year  of 
his  age  and  the  fortieth  of  his  episcopacy.  He  was  buried  in  St. 
Joseph's  Chapel  at  Bristol.  The  beautiful  Latin  epitaph  which 
records  his  virtues  and  his  scientific  eminence  was  written  by  his 
friend,  Father  Charles  Plowden. 

Bishop  Walmesley  was  a  man  of  very  severe  character.  He 
was  the  last  of  the  Vicars-Apostolic  in  England  to  allow  his  dio- 
cesans the  use  of  flesh  meat  in  Lent.  He  was  much  given  to 
meditation  on  the  four  last  things ;  and  in  the  company  of  his 
friends  was  wont  to  repeat  the  grim  warning,  "  Adesse,  festinant 
tempora."  In  his  dealings  with  those  who'  sided  with  Wilks 
against  him,  he  was  perhaps  unreasonably  severe.  One  cannot 
help  wondering  what  became  of  "  the  pleasing  and  captivating 
manners "  that  so  favorably  impressed  old  Bishop  York.  The 
following  recital,  drawn  from  a  letter  of  Bishop  James  Talbot,  will 
give  a  pretty  fair  idea  of  the  repute  enjoyed  by  Dr.  Walmesley 
among  his  contemporaries. 

In  1779,  when  he  applied  for  a  coadjutor,  he  presented  to  Pro- 
paganda the  names  of  three  Benedictines.  The  Roman  authori- 
ties were  displeased.  So  they  wrote  to  the  venerable  Bishop  Chal- 
loner  and  begged  him  to  answer  these  three  questions : 

1.  Does  Dr.  Walmesley  really  want  a  coadjutor? 

2.  What  do  you  know  about  the  gentlemen  he  has  named  ? 

3.  Is  there  no  secular  priest  fit  for  the  position  ? 
Dr.  Challoner  answered : 

1.  I  do  not  think  Dr.  Walmesley  really  wants  an  assistant. 

2.  The  three  gentlemen  are  unknown  to  me  and  mine. 

3.  No  secular  could  ever  be  agreeable  to  Dr.  Walmesley,  nor 
would  any  secular  ever  choose  to  be  assistant  to  him.  He  con- 
cludes by  suggesting  that  matters  had  better  remain  "  in  statu  quo." 

Dr.  Walmesley,  however,  got  his  Benedictine  assistant,  whom 
he  consecrated  at  Wardour  Castle  with  a  splendor  of  ceremonial 
never  seen  in  England  since  the  days  of  Philip  and  Mary.^ 

A  word  or  two  about  the  priests  whose  names  are  appended  to 
Bishop  Carroll's  certificate.  They  were  all  ex-Jesuits.  Charles 
Plowden  was  the  most  distinguished  of  the  quartette.  He  was 
born  in  1743  of  a  good  old  English  Catholic  family,  and  entered 
the  Jesuit  novitiate  at  the  age  of  sixteen.  At  the  time  of  the  sup- 
pression of  his  order  he  was  imprisoned  for  about  six  months  in 

1  The  engraving  of  Bishop  Walmsley  which  serves  as  the  frontispiece  of  the  Amer- 
ican edition  of  "  Pastorini "  is,  in  the  estimation  of  those  who  have  seen  the  authentic 
portrait  at  Downside,  but  a  poor  likeness.  The  Downside  portrait  represents  him  in 
the  habit  of  his  order  and  without  episcopal  insignia. 

J  2  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

Belgium.  In  1784  he  settled  at  Lulworth  Castle  as  tutor  to  the 
sons  of  Mr.  Weld.  Ten  years  later  he  went  to  Stonyhurst,  which 
was  his  home  for  twenty-three  years.  In  18 17  he  was  chosen 
Provincial  of  his  English  brethren.  He  died  in  France,  June, 
1 82 1,  while  on  his  way  from  Rome  to  England.  He  was  buried 
in  the  parish  where  he  died,  strange  to  say,  with  the  military 
honors  due  to  a  French  general. 

He  was  a  universal  scholar,  and  especially  admired  for  his  lit- 
erary ability.  Let  any  one  who  doubts  this  read  his  address  at 
Dr.  Carroll's  consecration.  Eight  of  his  published  works  are 
mentioned  in  the  "  Collectanea  S.  J."  One  of  them,  a  pamphlet 
on  the  Papal  Infallibility,  is  considered  by  Hiirter  to  entitle  him 
to  a  place  among  the  theologians  who  have  deserved  well  of  the 
Church  since  the  Council  of  Trent.  A  letter  to  Dr.  Carroll, 
wherein  he  states  his  intention  of  writing  that  pamphlet  and  narrat- 
ing the  events  leading  to  it,  is  to  be  seen  in  the  archives  of  the  See 
of  Baltimore.  "  Indeed,"  says  Dr.  Oliver  after  summing  up  Father 
Plowden's  literary  labors,  "  his  pen  was  never  idle."  It  was  he, 
by  the  way,  who  induced  Bishop  Walmesley  to  convoke  the  synod 
which  condemned  the  "  Protestation  Oath,"  who  was  that  prelate's 
ablest  ally  in  the  long  arid  bitter  contest  with  the  Committee,  and 
it  was  he  who  prevailed  upon  Thomas  Weld  to  throw  open  his 
castle  and  chapel  for  the  consecration  of  Bishops  Gibson  and  Douglas. 

Father  James  Porter,  the  other  priest  assistant,  was  born  in  the 
Low  Countries,  of  English  parents,  in  1733.  He  entered  the  So- 
ciety in  1752,  and  eighteen  years  later  became  one  of  the  professed 
Fathers.  Renouncing  a  considerable  estate,  he  led  for  many  years 
the  life  ofa  poor  missionafy  in  Wiltshire,  England.    He  died  in  18 10. 

Father  Charles  Forrester,  alias  Fleury,  was  a  Frenchman.  He 
lived  at  Wardour  Castle  as  missionary  and  chaplain  from  1775  to 
1 8 10.  He  was  an  able,  zealous,  and  amiable  priest.  When  the 
Society  was  restored,  he  reunited  himself  to  it.     He  died  in  1825. 

Thomas  Stanley  had  been  for  many  years  previous  to  Dr.  Car- 
roll's consecration  one  of  the  household  at  Lulworth.  He  went 
to  live  there  shortly  after  the  marriage  of  his  niece  to  Thomas 
Weld.  He  was  born  in  171 5,  and  became  a  novice  in  1732.  He 
died  at  the  castle,  full  of  years  and  merits,  in  1805.^ 

1  The  writer  wishes  here  to  tender  his  grateful  acknowledgments  to  all  who  have 
helped  him  in  the  preparation  of  this  paper,  but  especially  to  His  Eminence  Cardinal 
Gibbons;  the  Gustavo  Conrado,  Rector  of  Propaganda;  to  Dom  Gilbert  Dolan, 
O.  S.  B.,  of  St.  Gregory's,  Downside,  Bath  ;  to  Father  Reginald  Colley,  S.  J.,  Rector 
of  Stonyhurst;  to  Father  Lennon,  President  of  St.  Cuthbert's,  Ushaw,  Durham;  to 
Father  Caswell,  Librarian  at  Oscott;  to  Miss  Agnes  F.  Weld,  of  Lulworth  Castle; 
to  Joseph  Gillow,  Esq.,  of  Bowdon,  Cheshire,  author  of  the  "  Biographical  Dictionary 
of  English  Catholics,"  and  lastly  but  most  cordially  to  his  old  friend  of  "  The  Moun- 
tain," Mr.  Haldeman  OConnor,  who  has  rendered  invaluable  service  by  his  researches 
in  the  British  Museum  Library. 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium,  7^ 


THE  lover  of  liberty  turns  his  eyes  hopefully  to  Belgium, 
where  a  brave  struggle  for  the  rights  of  the  people,  home 
rule,  tolerance,  order  and  religion  has  been  rewarded  with  a  mem- 
orable victory.  As  the  latest  developments  of  this  struggle  bring 
out  clearly  the  real  position  of  the  opposing  social  and  political 
forces  of  our  day,  a  summary  of  more  recent  Belgian  histo;-y  has 
an  especial  interest  and  value.  The  facts  tell  more  than  one  prac- 
tical lesson. 

Belgium   won   her    independence    in    1830.     During  the  fifty- 
eight  years  that  have  since  gone  by,  the  Government  has  been 
almost  continuously  in  the  hands  of  a    so-called  Liberal  party. 
The  Conservatives  held  office  from   1846  to   1847;  from   1854  to 
1857;   and  again  from    1870  to    1878.     Carried  once  more  into 
power  by  a  great  popular  wave  in  1884,  they  still  control  the  Gov- 
ernment by  a  majority,  both  in  the  Senate  and  the  Chamber  of 
Deputies,  so  large  as  to  make  their  position  secure  for  many  a  day. 
From  1830  to  1846  there  was  little  of  party  feeling  in  Belgium. 
Above  all  there  was  no  organized  anti-religious  party.     A  liberal 
constitution    guaranteed    every    citizen    the    largest   freedom    of 
thought,  speech  and  action.     In  the  hands  of  right-minded,  patri- 
otic, liberal,  progressive,  far-seeing  men,  Belgium  would  long  ago 
have  been  raised  high  above  the  nations  as  an  exemplar  of  true 
liberty.     But  personal  ambitions,  the  influence  of  revolutionary 
ideas  and  of  the  modern  spirit  of  irreligion,  the  growth  of  a  bad 
kind  of  Masonry,  directed  by  men  who  accepted  the  radical  teach- 
ings of  the  Italian,  German  and  French  lodges,  in  time  divided  the 
people,  put  the  majority  on  the  defensive,  weakened  the  country, 
and  forced  it  out  of  the  way  of  true  progress.     In  1846  there  was 
already  an  opposition  party  which,  liberal  in  fact,  was,  for  the  sake 
of  distinction  from  the  ministerial  party.  Conservative  in  name,  and 
Catholic.     The  ministerial  party  had  dubbed  itself  "  Liberal,"  but 
was  Radical ;  and  that  word  meant  then,  as  nowadays  it  means, 
anti-Catholic,  if  not  anti-Christian.     Partly  on  account  of  a  want 
of  unity,  due  to  the  mistaken  importance  given  to  certain  questions 
that  were  assumed  to  involve  Catholic  principles  ;  partly  on  account 
of  a  lack  of  thorough  organization,  and  an  abundance  of  the  spirit  of 
laissez-faire  that  has  long  gone  by  the  name  of"  patience"  among 
Catholics  in  all  countries;  partly  through  a  misapprehension  of  the 

74  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

real  purposes  and  the  audacity  of  those  who  masqueraded  under 
the  name  of  Liberals  ;  and,  more  than  all,  on  account  of  the  con- 
scienceless, lawless,  revolutionary  methods  which  the  Radicals 
made  use  of,  the  •  Conservative-Catholic  party,  which  really  repre- 
sented the  country,  was,  as  we  have  seen,  almost  continuously  in 
a  minority  in  the  two  Chambers.  Up  to  the  present  day  the  Gov- 
ernment has  been  under  their  control  for  but  sixteen  years  out  of 
the  whole  fifty-eight  of  Belgian  autonomy. 

As  must  invariably  happen  where  the  principles  of  a  party  are 
not  based  on  religion,  the  tendency  of  the  so-called  Liberal  party 
was  steadily  in  the  direction  of  greater  and  greater  Radicalism. 
Power  was  by  degrees  more  and  more  centred  in  the  State.  The 
liberties  of  the  Provinces  and  the  Communes  were  violated,  abro- 
gated. Catholics  were  hampered,  deprived  of  constitutional  rights, 
and,  indeed,  denounced  as  unworthy  of  any  freedom  other  than 
that  which  it  might  please  their  open  enemies  to  concede  them. 
The  finances  of  the  country  were  mismanaged,  and  the  debt  and 
taxes  increased  without  any  satisfactory  return  to  the  people. 
Worse  than  all,  a  propaganda,  not  of  philosophical  infidelity,  but 
of  forceful,  riotous,  anarchic  irreligion,  fostered  by  the  very  Min- 
isters themseh  es,  was  actively  at  work  among  the  people.  The 
necessities  of  ministry  after  ministry  compelled  them  to  sacrifice 
the  views  of  moderate  men  to  the  demands  of  the  narrow-minded, 
the  bitter,  the  blindly  unpatriotic  Radical  wing  of  the  party.  Fi- 
nally, in  1879,  Frere-Orban's  School  Law  was  passed,  and  a  rude 
blow  given  to  the  liberties  of  the  individual  and  the  Commune. 
The  education  of  the  people  was  put  under  the  absolute  rule  of 
the  State ;  and  a  compulsory  system  of  irreligious  teaching  was 
forced  upon  the  citizens,  on  the  ground  that  the  Ten  Command- 
ments of  God  and  the  laws  of  the  Church  nullified  conscfence. 

Of  the  bold,  manly,  intelligent  and  successful  opposition  made 
to  this  illiberal  law,  we  gave  some  account  in  the  pages  of  this 
Review  several  years  ago.^  The  people,  awakened  from  their 
sleep,  organized  themselves  in  defence  of  the  liberties  guaranteed 
them  by  the  Constitution,  of  their  natural  rights,  of  the  Christian 
religion.  On  the  other  hand,  the  Radicals  who  had  forced  the 
Government  into  the  ways  of  tyranny  were  more  than  ever  auda- 
cious in  their  methods  and  exacting  in  their  demands.  They  did 
not  realize  the  temper  of  the  people.  But  when  the  people  were 
ready  they  made  clear  their  purpose  to  be  rid  of  the  men  who  would 
have  put  them  under  the  rule  of  a  despotism.  At  the  elections 
of  May  and  June,  1884,  the  Conservative-Catholics,  supported  by 

1  "The  School  Question  in  Belgium."— Catholic  Quarterly  Review,  July, 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium.  75 

all  the  liberty  lovers  of  the  country,  were  carried  into  office  with 
the  remarkable  majorities  of  34  in  the  Chamber  of  Deputies  and  ot 
17  in  the  Senate.  Before  the  elections  they  were  in  the  minority 
by  20  votes  in  the  Chamber  and  5  in  the  Senate.  This  peaceful 
revolution  has  only  gathered  strength  with  time.  The  elections 
of  1886  gave  the  Conservative-Catholic  party  a  majority  of  56  in 
the  Chamber  of  Deputies  and  an  increased  majority  in  the  Senate. 
No  ministry  had  ever  come  before  the  Chambers  with  a  like  ma- 
jority to  back  it.  The  events  of  the  two  following  years  only 
served  to  fix  the  people's  confidence  in  a  Conservative-Catholic 
ministry.  Witness  the  elections  of  1888,  when  the  majority  in  the 
Chamber  of  Deputies  was  increased  to  58,  and  that  in  the  Senate 
to  33.  And  yet,  if  you  remember,  in  1884  the  American  journals 
were  informing  us  that  the  "Clericals"  were  treading  on  dangerous 
ground,  and  that  their  opposition  to  Radical  centralization  was 
"  iniquitous  and  inexcusable!  " 

The  ministry  which  came  into  office  under  Malou,  in  June,  1884, 
was  not  slow  in  giving  back  to  the  country  the  liberties  which  had 
been  temporarily  filched  from  it.  Within  six  weeks  a  new  School 
Bill,  that  recognized  and  guarded  the  natural  rights  of  the  parent, 
the  constitutional  liberties  of  the  Communes,  and  the  rights  of 
minorities,  was  presented  to  both  Houses.  A  month  later  the  bill 
was  passed  and  received  the  King's  signature.  The  attempt  of  the 
Radicals  to  intimidate  the  Ministry,  the  Chambers,  and  the  King, 
by  mobs,  riots  and  bloodshed,  came  to  nought.  The  Ministry 
maintained  the  peace  by  firm,  moderate  measures.  When  the 
King,  listening  to  the  suggestions  of  one  of  the  most  radical  of  the 
ex-ministers,  Bara,  tried  to  force  a  compromise  ministry  on  Malou, 
after  the  elections  in  the  autumn  of  1884,  the  Ministry  rejected  the 
proposal  as  a  unit.  When  he  requested  the  resignation  of  MM. 
Jacobs  and  Woeste,  who  had  been  active  in  drawing  up  and  pass- 
ing the  new  School  Law,  they  declined  to  resign  unless  under  the 
exercise  of  the  King's  prerogative ;  and  as  the  King  unreasonably 
exercised  his  prerogative,  Malou  resigned,  saying  to  the  King  that, 
after  fighting  for  the  crown  and  the  country  against  "  Liberalism" 
and  Radicalism  for  forty  years,  he  was  unwilling  to  seem  to  accept 
the  King's  line  of  conduct.  Bernaert,  who  is  still  Premier,  took 
Malou's  place,  and  brought  into  his  Cabinet  M.  Thonissen,  the 
well-known  Professor  of  Law  at  Louvain,  and  Caraman-Chimay, 
who  had  served  of  old  under  Conservative  governments. 

The  Radicals  who  called  themselves  Liberals,  as  well  as  those 
who,  scouting  the  name  Liberal,  would  be  known  only  as  Radi- 
cals, were  not  satisfied  with  the  turn  of  affairs.  They  hoped  that 
force  would  have  helped  them  to  save  some  of  their  bad  work. 
But  they  counted  without  their  host.     The  Conservative-Catholics 

^6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

had  given  way  to  force,  years  before,  in  the  interest  of  what  was 
called  the  peace  of  the  country.  Now  they  had  determined  that 
there  should  be  peace,  not  at  the  expense  of  the  peaceful  citizens, 
but  rather  at  the  expense  of  the  law-breakers  and  revolutionaries. 
On  the  1 8th  of  November,  1884,  Frere-Orban,  who  could  not  hide 
his  fears  and  his  spite,  asked  the  new  Ministry  whether  the  recent 
changes  meant  only  changes  of  persons,  or  a  real  change  of  policy. 
And  Bernaert  seized  the  occasion  to  make  his  position  clear  before 
the  country.  The  changes  in  the  Ministry  were,  he  said,  due  to 
the  exercise  of  the  royal  prerogative ;  on  questions  of  principle, 
the  present  Ministry  had  the  same  convictions  as  the  former  Min- 
istry. The  frankness  and  courage  of  this  answer,  with  its  direct 
defence  of  parliamentary  government  against  the  uncalled  for  in- 
terference of  royalty,  and  its  clear  announcement  of  a  definite 
policy  in  accordance  with  the  wishes  of  the  people  as  expressed  in 
the  election,  had  a  far-reaching  effect.  The  Radical-Liberals  called 
off  their  professional  agitators  and  rioters ;  and  the  Government 
proceeded,  with  no  uncertain  hand,  to  put  into  execution  the  new 
School  Law.  Discussing  this  law,  in  1885,  we  qualified  it  as  "a 
just  law,"  "  a  law  of  statesmen,"  a  law  "  devised  to  meet  existing 
conditions,"  a  law  "  assuring  freedom  of  instruction  and  protecting 
the  rights  of  the  minority."  The  eagerness  with  which  the  Com- 
munes availed  themselves  of  its  liberal  provisions,  and  their  satis- 
faction with  its  working,  as  shown  by  the  popular  vote  at  every 
election  since  its  passage,  testify  to  the  correctness  of  our  appre- 
ciation of  the  Malou  School  Law.  No  better  evidence  could  be 
offered  of  the  soundness  of  the  Ministry's  position  and  the  malice 
of  the  riotous  opposition  to  the  law  than  that  given  by  the  action 
of  the  Radical-Liberals  within  a  few  weeks  after  Bernaert's  manly 

A  certain  M.  Buls,  Burgomaster  of  Brussels,  a  forward  Radical, 
and,  of  course,  a  forward  Mason,  founder  of  the  political  club  called 
the  "  Educational  League,"  had  used  his  position  to  encourage 
the  agitation  against  the  School  Law,  the  Ministry  and  the  King. 
He  it  was  who  gave  preference  and  precedence  to  the  Radical 
demonstration  against  the  bill ;  he  it  was  who  permitted  the  mob 
to  attack  and  maltreat  the  Conservative  demonstration  in  favor  of 
the  bill,  and  for  this  he  was  publicly  censured  by  the  Senate ;  he 
it  was  who  organized  the  extraordinary  league  of  Radical  burgo- 
masters—these are  not  elective  officers— who,  in  meeting  assembled, 
swore  a  solemn  oath  to  prevent  the  signing  and  execution  of  the 
new  School  Law,  by  every  legal  means ;  he  it  was  who  issued  a 
manifesto  as  late  as  September  15th,  advising  the  world  that  he, 
and  the  burgomasters  allied  with  him,  would  never  cease  using 
the  threatened  legal  means  against  the  law.  By  the  5th  of  Decem- 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium.  yy 

ber  the  terrible  burgomasters,  who  had  sworn  the  mighty  oath,  had 
come  to  an  agreement  to  propose  to  their  Communal  Councils  to 
place  rooms  at  the  disposal  of  the  clergy,  in  which  they  might  give 
religious  instruction,  out  of  school  hours.  The  Radical  Communal 
Council  at  Ghent  had  eaten  its  leek  a  week  earlier.  How  bold 
they  were  when  in  power,  these  men  of  compromise  !  When  they 
were  about  to  trample  on  the  Constitution  in  1879,  Minister  Von 
Humbeek  voiced  the  views  of  all  the  roaring  Buls  :  "  The  teach- 
ing contained  in  the  ten  commandments  of  God,  and  in  the  laws 
of  the  Church,  is  the  absolute  negation  of  liberty  of  conscience,  the 
teaching  of  a  sect ;  on  this  account,  from  this  time  forward,  this 
teaching  would  not  be  put  before  the  pupils  by  the  teacher ;  it 
would  be  excluded  from  elementary  education."  And  here,  alas  ! 
we  find  M.  Van  Humbeek  excluded  from  the  Government,  and  the 
Radicals  violating  whatever  conscience  they  have,  in  order  to  ac- 
commodate the  clergy  who  may  wish  to  instruct  the  pupils  how 
to  '*  negate  "  liberty  of  conscience,  after  school  hours  !  What  a 
fine  teacher  adversity  is  !  - 

The  Frere-Orban  Ministry  used  the  unpopular  School  Law  to 
serve  purposes  not  disclosed  in  the  bill.  Belgium  had  continuously 
held  diplomatic  relations  with  the  Papacy.  Failing  to  obtain  the 
Pope's  aid  in  the  Radical  attack  on  the  Church,  Frere-Orban  had 
contemptuously  withdrawn  the  Belgian  representative  at  the  Vati- 
can. In  answer  to  an  interpellation  from  the  Conservatives  on 
April  23d,  1884,  about  six  weeks  before  the  defeat  of  the  Radi- 
cals at  the  polls,  the  Minister  of  Foreign  Affairs  declared  that  a 
renewal  of  diplomatic  relations  with  the  Papal  See  was  impossible. 
Within  three  months  from  this  date,  on  July  i8th,  Malou  tele- 
graphed to  Rome,  proposing  a  renewal  of  diplomatic  relations.  On 
the  8th  of  August  both  houses  passed  a  bill  to  that  effect,  and  ap- 
propriated monies  to  meet  the  expenses  of  the  mission.  Mean- 
time Malou  resigned.  Under  Bernaert  the  negotiations  were  com- 
pleted, and  on  March  30th,  1885,  the  Pope  nominated  the  Presi- 
dent of  the  Ecclesiastical  Academy,  Monsignor  Domenico  Ferrata, 
as  Nuncio  to  Belgium.  Within  eleven  months  after  coming  into 
office  the  Conservatives  had  performed  the  "  impossible !  " 

But  they  had  then  done,  and  they  have  since  done,  many  things 
possible  and  desirable.  When  the  Conservative  Catholic  Ministry 
resigned  in  1878,  after  eight  years  of  rule,  it  left  a  well-filled 
treasury.  The  receipts  exceeded  the  expenses  by  some  ;^7,ooo,ooo. 
Evidently  the  Radicals  looked  upon  a  moderate  surplus  as  a 
national  evil.  Within  five  years  they  had  not  only  made  away 
with  the  surplus,  but  had  issued  new  loans  to  the  amount  of  ^80- 
000,000,  laid  more  than  ;^5, 000,000  of  new  taxes  on  the  people, 
and  accumulated  a  deficit  of   ^13,000,000.      The    Conservative- 

7 8  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

Catholics  were  quick  to  find  a  remedy  against  this  comprehensive 
system  of  waste.  Shortly  before  their  defeat,  on  March  4th,  the 
Radicals  had  presented  the  budget  for  1885,  showing  a  modest 
deficit  of  ;^700,ooo.  The  Bernaert  Ministry  brought  in  a  new 
budo-et,  based  on  other  notions  of  official  responsibility  and  public 
economy.  As  a  result,  the  proposed  deficit  was  turned  into  a  sur- 
plus of  ^400,000.  The  budget  of  1886  showed  a  surplus  of  ;^535,- 
000;  that  of  1887  a  surplus  of  ;^2,400,ooo.  Meantime,  the  annual 
expenditures  had  been  steadily  reduced,  and,  in  1887,  were  ^3,000,- 
000  less  than  in  1884.  The  Radical  love  of  liberty  is  too  often 
apparent  only  in  a  free  handling  of  the  public  purse.  Under  the 
management  of  the  Conservative-Catholics  Belgian  credit  was  so 
strengthened  that,  in  August,  1886,  the  Ministry  announced  its 
intention  of  refunding  the  national  debt,  which  carried  4  per  cent., 
into  a  3j^  per  cent  obligation,  and  this  operation  has  since  been 
effected,  with  a  saving  of  somewhat  over  ;^  1,000,000  a  year.  To 
us  who  saddled  ourselves  joyfully  with  a  debt  of  a  couple  of  mil- 
liards— partly  that  we  might  know  what  it  was  to  be  blessed — and 
who  think  nothing  of  paying  off  ;^20,ooo,000  of  bonds  in  a  week, 
these  little  savings  may  seem  hardly  worth  reckoning.  But  with 
the  crowded  and  poorly  paid  population  of  Belgium  every  little 
counts.  Every  little  counts  here,  if  we  only  realized  it ;  and,  in 
good  time,  we  shall  certainly  have  to  learn  the  lesson  that  the  rest 
of  the  world  was  forced  to  learn  long  ago.  In  Belgium  strict  econ- 
omy is  absolutely  necessary.  Were  there  no  such  thing  as  patri- 
otism, or  justice,  or  common  humanity,  the  law  of  self-preservation 
would  compel  sane  men  to  keep  down  the  expenditure  to  the  low- 
est point  possible.  The  country  is  the  most  densely  inhabited  in 
Europe.  When  the  first  census  of  the  new  kingdom  was  taken  in 
i83i,the  population  numbered  3,785,814.  Since  that  date  there 
has  been  a  considerable  Belgian  emigration,  and  yet  on  the  31st  of 
December,  1885,  there  was  a  population  of  5,853,278.  The  rate 
of  increase  has  been  steadily  higher  than  in  any  other  European 
country.  With  this  notable  and  regular  growth  of  the  population, 
and  the  declining  prices  for  coal,  iron,  grain  and  cattle,  true  poli- 
ticians find  themselves  facing  a  problem  which  is  to  be  solved  only 
by  the  greatest  prudence. 

Having  in  part  undone  the  work  of  centralization  which  the  Radi- 
cal Liberals  had  so  boisterously  pushed  along,  and  having  light- 
ened the  burdens  of  all  classes,  the  Ministry  next  sought  the  best 
means  to  give  the  people  a  larger  voice  in  their  own  government. 
The  policy  of  the  Conservative-Catholics  may  be  summed  up  in 
two  words  :  Home  Rule  and  Popular  Representation.  One  would 
imagine  they  were  liberals  !  Strange  to  say,  during  the  whole  time 
the  Radical  Liberals  held  office,  they  were   uniformly  opposed  to 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium.  70 

any  extension  of  the  franchise.     Nowadays,   when  universal  suf- 
frage is  assumed   to  be  a  cure   for  all  political  and  social  ills,  we 
expect  a  Liberal  to  be  somewhat  radical  on  the  question  of  man- 
hood suffrage.     But  the  Belgian  Radical  Liberals  were  more  than 
conservative  on  this  subject.     Up  to  1885  there  were  only  twenty 
voters  to  the  thousand  in  Belgium.     Of  the  total  male  adult  popu- 
lation, one-thirteenth  enjoyed  the  franchise.     The  exclusion  of  so 
large  a  proportion  of  the  citizens  from  the  right  to  vote  was  due, 
in  part,  to  the  Constitution,  and,  in  part,  to  the  system  of  taxation 
that  had  been  long  in  vogue.     There  are  three  classes  of  voters  in 
Belgium.     Any  citizen,  paying  taxes  yearly  to  the  amount  of  ten 
francs,  may  vote  for  members  of  the  Communal  Councils.     These 
Councils  control  the  police,  the  public  works,  and  the  public  insti- 
tions  of  their  respective  Communes,  and  from  among  the  members 
of  these  Councils  the  King  selected  the  burgomaster,  or   mayor, 
and  certain  others  to  perform  the  duties  of  Aldermen.    In  order  to 
vote  for  members  of  the  Provincial  Councils  that  exercise  general 
powers  over  the  nine  provinces  into  which  Belgium  is  divided,  the 
citizen  must  pay  taxes  yearly  to  the  amount  of  twenty  francs.  When 
it  comes  to  voting  for  parliamentary  representatives,  the  Constitu- 
tion is   much   more  exacting.     Only  those  can   vote  who  pay  a 
yearly  tax  of  forty-two  francs  thirty-five  centimes.     This  require- 
ment of  the  Constitution  threw  the  control  of  the  general  govern- 
ment into  the  hands  of  a  body  of  citizens  relatively  much  smaller 
in  number  than  that  which  directed  the  affairs  of  the  provinces  and 
communes.     Any  lowering  of  the  constitutional   limit  of  taxation, 
or  alteration  in  the  tax  laws,  would  have  increased  the  vote  of  the 
farmers.     There  are   fully  800,000  Belgians  directly  engaged  in 
agricultural  pursuits.     As  skilful  tillers  of  the  land,  and  breeders 
of  cattle,  they  are  known  the  world  over.     The  rare  rate  of  increase 
in  population  is  a  proof  of  their  morality,  and  the  credit  of  the 
country   testifies   to  their   industry  and    frugality.     The  Radical 
Liberals  feared  the  free  expression  of  the  farmers'  vote.  The  party 
was  not  merely  opposed  to  extending  the  franchise,  but  it  sought 
to  nullify  the  influence  of  the  agricultural   vote  in  the  Provincial 
and  Communal  Councils,  where  it  was  more  general  by  reason  of 
the  more  moderate  requirements  of  the  laws  on  taxation  and  repre- 
sentation.    To  make  this  vote  unavailing,  to  deprive  it  of  its  right- 
ful voice  in  local  affairs,  the  Radicals  tried  to  wrench  from  province 
and   commune  their  constitutional   and  traditional   rights,  and  to 
centre  them  in  the  hands  of  the  general  government,  the  least  rep- 
resentative body   in  the   kingdom.     Was  this  policy  based  on  an 
ardent  love  of  liberty  ?     No,  but  on  a  love  of  power  and  a  narrow 
spirit  of  illiberal,  tyrannical  intolerance.     The  farming  class  is  not 
irreligious,  and  it  is  conservative,  orderly,  Cathohc. 

So  American  Catholic  Quarteny  Review, 

The  Frere-Orban  ministry  was  opposed  to  any  extension  of  the 
franchise ;  the  Radical  doctrinaires,  philosophers  and  press  were 
opposed  to  the  extension  of  the  franchise,  and,  of  course,  the  Bel- 
gian lodges  would  have  none  of  it.  Universal  suffrage  would  have 
fixed  the  Catholics  in  power  for  an  indefinite  period.  But  the 
Catholics  had  no  desire  to  force  the  question.  In  the  actual  posi- 
tion of  parties  nothing  could  be  done.  To  have  manhood  suffrage 
the  Constitution  would  have  to  be  revised.  A  revision  of  the  Con- 
stitution can  be  effected  only  by  a  vote  of  both  houses,  dissolu- 
tion, a  new  election  and  an  adoption  of  proposed  amendments  by 
a  two-thirds  vote  in  the  house  and  the  senate.  As  parties  stood, 
the  Conservatives  could  do  nothing  to  bring  on  universal  suffrage. 
Nor,  indeed,  could  the  Radical  Liberals.  However,  they  could 
have  widened  the  suffrage  without  a  revision,  had  they  not  feared 
the  consequences.  Towards  the  end  of  its  last  lease  of  power,  the 
party  found  itself  in  straits.  The  Radicals  of  a  few  years  back  had 
been  distanced  by  a  new  set  of  Radicals.  These  were  republican, 
socialistic,  anarchist.  They  wanted  universal  suffrage,  because  they 
could  not  get  it.  Their  purpose  was  one  of  agitation,  disturbance, 
revolution.  To  give  way  to  them,  meant  the  destruction  of  the 
so-called  Liberal  party,  the  overturning  of  the  Ministry,  and  a  new 
order  of  things.  But  the  case  was  desperate.  Even  were  the  party 
united,  it  was  plain  that  the  people  were  aroused,  and  meant  to 
bury  the  Radical  Liberals  deep  down  under  their  own  folly.  The 
Ministry  conceived  a  specious  scheme,  by  which  they  hoped  to 
pacify  the  real  Radicals,  to  blind  the  friends  of  liberty,  and  to  cre- 
ate a  fictitious  Radical  Liberal  majority.  As  it  happened,  they 
only  dug  a  deeper  pit  for  themselves.  Frere-Orban  brought  in  a 
law  extending  the  franchise.  This  law  gave  a  vote  to  certain 
classes  of  employees  and  officials,  regardless  of  the  payment  of 
taxes ;  and,  further,  made  a  distinctive  class  of  non-taxpaying 
voters  out  of  those  who  should  receive  a  diploma  after  a  govern- 
ment examination — a  sort  of  "  civil  service  "  voting  class.  This 
scientific  extension  of  the  franchise  was  skilfully  qualified  by  regu- 
lations forbidding  non-commissioned  officers  and  soldiers  to  vote, 
while  serving  with  the  colors,  and  providing  that  the  clergy  should 
vote  at  the  places  zvhere  they  lived  before  entering  the  ministry.  The 
purpose  of  this  bill  is  evident.  It  was  not  meant  to  enlarge  the 
franchise ;  but  it  was  meant  to  increase  the  Radical-Liberal  vote 
and  to  diminish  that  of  the  Conservatives.  This  piece  of  petti- 
fogging politics  did  not  work  as  expected.  After  all,  a  man  may 
have  a  diploma,  and,  at  the  same  time,  a  sense  of  honor,  justice 
and  patriotism.     So  the  event  proved. 

In  January,  1885,  the  Bernaert  Ministry  gave  notice  of  their 
intention  to  introduce  a  bill  extending  the  franchise.     They  kept 

The  Last  Four  \ears  in  Belgium,  8 1 

their  word  ;  and  since  that  date  they  have  not  only  taken  care  that 
the  Senate  and  Chamber  of  Deputies  shall  more  truly  represent 
the  people,  but  they  have  divested  the  Crown,  or  the  Ministry,  of 
certain  rights  heretofore  exercised  by  one  or  the  other,  to  the  ex- 
clusion of  the  Provincial  or  Communal  Councils.  Nowhere  has 
the  principle  of  "home  rule  "  received  a  heartier  acknowledgment 
than  in  Belgium  under  a  Catholic-Conservative  government. 

They  have  no  income  tax  in  Belgium.  Hence  the  status  of  the 
parliamentary  elector,  paying  42  fr.  35  ct  per  annum,  depended  on 
the  legal  methods  of  apportionment  of  several  special  taxes. 
Since,  by  the  requirements  of  the  Constitution,  only  those  could 
vote  who  paid  a  definite  sum  of  taxes,  extension  of  the  franchise 
was  possible,  at  the  moment,  only  through  a  redistribution  of  taxa- 
tion. The  position  was  a  difficult  one.  Seldom  does  an  occasion 
present  itself  when  a  class  that  escapes  taxation  is  desirous  of 
assuming  a  new  share  of  the  taxes.  The  country,  however,  appre- 
ciated the  difficulty ;  knew  that  the  country  alone  was  to  blame 
for  the  actual  state  of  things  ;  and  was  not  only  willing,  but  de- 
sirous, that  the  Ministry  should  enlarge  the  franchise  by  the  best, 
and  only  practicable,  means.  To  meet  the  wishes  of  the  people, 
the  Ministry,  on  July  loth,  1885,  introduced  a  bill  which  placed 
the  whole  of  the  land  tax  on  the  tenants.  This  bill  was  passed  on 
August  1 2th  of  the  same  year;  and  Belgium  took  its  first  step 
forward  in  the  path  of  popular  representation.  Hereafter,  the  son 
of  the  soil,  the  sturdy  farmer,  who  pays  a  goodly  share  of  taxes 
out  of  his  hard  earnings,  will  stand  on  a  level  with  the  townsman 
who  pays  no  taxes,  but,  in  lieu,  patriotically  bears  the  yoke  of  a 
government  diploma. 

The  Machiavellian  regulations  of  the  Frere-Orban  ministry, 
which  practically  disqualified  military  officers,  clergymen,  com- 
mercial travellers,  boatmen,  and  other  business  men  who  had  more 
than  one  residence,  or  place  of  business,  were  so  modified  as  to 
assure  the  franchise  to  the  honest  voter.  These  democratic 
measures  were  hotly  opposed  by  the  Revolutionaries  and  the 
Radical  Liberals.  That  the  ministry  would  have  gone  much  fur- 
ther in  its  acknowledgment  of  popular  rights,  were  it  not  for  the 
untoward  events  of  1886,  is  apparent  from  the  bill  adopted  on 
November  24th,  1887,  by  which  the  right  of  appointment  of  the 
aldermen  was  taken  away  from  the  King,  and  put  in  the  hands  of 
the  communal  councils.  The  King  still  nominates  the  burgo- 
masters, or  mayors;  but,  even  so,  the  government  of  the  Belgium 
communes  approaches  more  nearly  to  the  ideal  of  "  home  rule," 
is  freer,  more  popular,  more  democratic-republican,  than  that  of 
many  of  our  American  cities. 

The  open,  fair,  progressive  temper  of  the  Catholic-Conservative 
VOL.  XIV. — 6 

82  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

party  is  again  emphasized  by  the  bill  introduced  by  the  Bernaert 
ministry,  on  January  24th,  1888,  a  bill  which  the  Chamber  of 
Deputies  forthwith  resolved  to  take  into  consideration.  This  bill 
is  in  the  interest  of  minorities,  and,  by  a  system  of  proportional 
representation,  assures  minorities  a  voice  in  public  affairs.  There 
is  such  a  thing  as  true  radicalism — a  going  to  the  root  of  things 
as  they  are.  Compare  it  with  that  immoral,  disorderly,  indecent, 
blasphemous,  contemporary  thing  called  "  Radicalism  "  ;  and  then 
let  all  but  knaves,  fools,  and  madmen  take  their  choice. 

During  its  long  years  of  rule,  the  Radical  Liberal  party,  while 
showing  a  thorough  contempt  for  the  rights  of  the  people,  for 
liberal  government,  for  progress,  had  endeavored  to  lower  the 
moral  standing  of  the  townspeople,  to  divide  class  against  class,  to 
enforce  the  spread  of  ideas  subversive  of  all  law  and  all  peace. 
It  was  with  this  object  that  they  strove  "  to  drive  out  the  Catholic 
religion  from  elementary  education."  But  while  the  Catholic  re- 
ligion was  the  one  they  selected  for  their  attacks,  their  real  object 
was  the  total  repression  of  all  Christian  teaching  whatever.  As 
one  of  their  forward  spokesmen  announced,  they  wished  "  to  secu- 
larize heaven  as  well  as  the  earth  "  ;  "  to  do  away  with  Christian 
spiritualism,  the  terrors  of  a  future  life,  the  pre-occupation  with 
an  imaginary  salvation."  Unfortunately  they  succeeded  to  a  cer- 
tain extent,  especially  among  the  workingmen.  When  the  Frere- 
Orban  ministry  was  thrown  out  of  power,  it  took  the  leaders  some 
months  to  realize  that  their  case  was  hopeless.  Then  the  less 
radical  element,  or  to  put  it  more  truly,  the  element  that  retained 
a  longing  for  the  offices,  and  was  practical  enough  to  know  that 
these  were  not  to  be  reached  by  the  road  of  the  Irreconcilables, 
undertook  to  reorganize  the  Radical  Liberal  party.  Many  who 
were  ready  to  go  to  any  length  when  in  power,  now  pleaded  for 
what  they  called  moderation.  But  the  true  blue  Radicals,  under 
Janson,  President  of  the  Brussels  Liberal  Association,  refused  to 
give  up  an  iota  of  their  "  principles."  The  Radical  Liberal  party 
was  split  in  twain ;  and  split  it  is  until  this  day.  Negotiations 
begun  from  time  to  time,  generally  during  the  election  campaigns, 
have  all  come  to  nothing.  Recrimination  has  been  the  order  of 
the  day.  Meantime  Janson's  activity  was  not  without  effect. 
Around  him  he  rallied  a  party  made  up  of  "  secularized  "  demo- 
crats, who  want  a  republic ;  of  labor  reformers,  socialists, 
anarchists — bond  fide  revolutionaries.  Thanks  to  the  good  will, 
and  the  unremitting  propaganda,  of  their  French  and  German 
brothers,  the  Belgian  workingmen,  more  especially  the  factory 
hands,  miners,  and  workers  in  the  large  industrial  establishments, 
have  been  won  over  to  the  worst  forms  of  socialism.  The  army, 
too,  has  proved  a  good  nursery  for  these  pernicious   teachings. 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium,  83 

How  wide  an  influence  they  had  gained,  how  thoroughly  a  large 
body  of  poor  men  had  been  indoctrinated  with  the  idea  that  force 
was  a  fair  and  serviceable  means  of  attaining  an  end  not  bad  in 
itself— and  this  they  had  been  practically  taught  by  the  organized 
system  of  riots  which  the  Radical  Liberal  party  had  used  as  a 
political  means  for  nigh  on  to  twenty  years — how  deeply  the 
Radical  Liberal  press,  and  the  un-Christian  lodge  and  school,  had 
undermined  the  public  morals,  was  brought  to  light  only  in  1886. 
The  history  of  the  greater  part  of  that  year  is  a  painful  record 
of  riots,  incendiarism,  murder,  ruthless  destruction  of  private 
property,  and  forcible  repression.  Whatever  reasonable  occasion 
there  may  have  been  for  local  strikes,  or  whatever  ills  the  working- 
men  of  particular  sections  may  have  had  just  reason  to  complain 
of,  there  is  strong  evidence  that  the  movement  begun  in  Brussels 
on  March  i8th  was  a  deliberate,  organized  movement,  managed  by 
the  native  and  foreign  socialist  leaders.  The  i8th  of  March  is  the 
sad  anniversary  of  the  Paris  Commune.  On  that  day,  at  Brussels 
as  well  as  at  Liege,  there  was  a  commemorative  demonstration  of 
workingmen.  The  Brussels  contingent  paraded  the  streets,  with 
banners,  and  flags,  and  noisy  cries.  Some  shop  windows  were 
smashed;  there  were  inflammatory  speeches,  of  course ;  and  there 
the  matter  ended.  At  Liege  the  celebration  was  of  a  heartier 
character.  There  the  "  workingmen  "  flung  the  red  flag  to  the 
breeze,  and  encouraged  peaceful  citizens  with  shouts  of  **  Down  with 
Capital,"  "  Death  to  the  Bourgeois^  The  celebrants  carried  sticks, 
and,  at  a  given  signal  they  broke  ranks,  made  their  way  into  the 
shops,  plundered  right  and  left,  and  then  took  to  wrecking.  By 
the  2 1  St  the  men  in  the  collieries  near  Liege  had  begun  to  go  out 
on  strike.  Bands  of  strikers  robbed  in  broad  daylight,  and  de- 
stroyed what  they  could  not  carry  away.  Meantime  socialist 
meetings  were  held  at  Brussels,  the  men  attending  them  being  all 
armed  with  revolvers.  By  the  29th  of  the  month  there  was  a 
general  strike  throughout  the  whole  district  extending  from  Liege 
to  Tournai,  along  the  French  border.  The  men  in  the  coal  mines 
and  stone  quarries,  iron-workers,  glass-workers,  workers  of  all  sorts, 
had  laid  down  their  tools,  some  willingly,  some  whether  they  would 
or  not.  From  the  revolutionary  press  they  received  every  encour- 
agement. The  socialist  leaders  were  active  indirection.  Placards 
were  posted  up  recommending  that  the  men  should  go  armed  to 
their  public  meetings.  Liege,  Namur,  Charleroi,  Mons,  Tournai, 
were  all  centres  of  disturbance.  The  farmers  were  forced  to  pay 
cash  indemnities  to  strikers  ;  shops  were  sacked ;  blast  furnaces 
extinguished  ;  the  great  glassworks  of  the  Hainault  district  pillaged 
and  burned,  one  after  the  other.  Country  seats,  chateaux,  colleges, 
convents,  were  fired.     There  was  a  plentiful  supply  of  petroleum 

§4  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

and  beer.  Axes,  bludgeons,  revolvers,  were  used  effectively  by 
the  mob,  and  many  lives  were  taken.  Town  upon  town  was  in  an 
actual  state  of  siege. 

The  movement  was  wholly  unexpected  ;  but  the  Government 
was  prompt  in  taking  measures  to  preserve  the  peace.  It  did  not 
interfere,  however,  until  events  proved  that  neither  police,  gens- 
darmes,  nor  civic  guards,  could  deal  with  the  rioters.  On  March 
28th  a  state  of  siege  was  proclaimed  throughout  the  districts 
covered  by  the  strike,  and  general  orders  were  given  to  fire  without 
hesitation  on  all  rioters.  The  army  reserves  of  188 1,  1882,  were 
called  out,  and  the  soldiery,  under  General  Vander  Smissen,  took 
the  strikers  in  hand.  He  adopted  drastic  measures.  They  were 
appreciated.  By  the  31st  of  the  month  work  had  been  resumed 
at  most  of  the  collieries  and  factories  ;  and  on  the  7th  of  April  the 
General  was  able  to  announce  that  order  had  been  re-established. 
The  strikes  had  not  been  settled.  There  was  a  constant  force  at 
work  in  the  interest  not  of  the  workingmen,  but  of  political 
agitation.  New  strikes  were  common,  week  after  week,  up  to  the 
1st  of  September.  One  day  the  quarrymen  struck  at  one  place, 
returned  to  work  in  a  week  or  two ;  after  a  few  days  struck  again. 
The  next  day  it  was  the  miners'  turn.  Sometimes  the  strikes  were 
by  districts  ;  then,  at  odd  places  wide  apart. 

A  review  of  the  political  side  of  the  strikes  may  prove  interest- 
ing. No  sooner  had  the  celebration  of  the  anniversary  of  the 
Paris  Commune  ended  than  the  Radicals,  Socialists,  and  Anar- 
chists opened  a  sympathetic  campaign.  Brussels  of  course  was 
the  headquarters.  There  they  held  nightly  meetings  and  proces- 
sions. The  King  was  loudly  abused  from  the  platform.  A  pro- 
cession marched  to  the  palace,  to  sing  the  Marseillaise  under  the 
King's  windows.  The  strikers  and  rioters  were  applauded.  Out- 
side help  was  generous  in  its  sacrifices.  Foreign  revolutionaries 
crowded  into  the  capital.  Early  in  the  movement,  Henri  Roche- 
fort,  and  Laguerre,  the  Paris  Socialist  Deputy,  came  to  offer  their 
services.  But  the  Government  was  not  sympathetic,  and  warned 
them  to  keep  on  their  own  side' of  the  border.  The  Radical  press 
directed  and  encouraged  the  rioters ;  denounced  the  coal  and  mine 
operators,  and  the  manufacturers,  as  men  gorged  with  profits,  and 
deservedly  pillaged ;  reproached  the  government  for  keeping  the 
peace,  and  demanded  that  the  state  expropriate  the  present  owners, 
intrust  the  working  of  the  coal  mines  to  syndicates  of  colliers,  and 
introduce  universal  suffrage.  Indeed  the  whole  movement  was, 
apparently,  engineered  with  the  idea  of  forcing  universal  suffrage 
by  means  of  a  reign  of  terror.  On  April  25th  five  hundred  dele- 
gates, representing  104  societies,  held  a  "  Workmen's  Congress," 
at  Brussels.     As  a   result   of  this  meeting,   the  secretary  of  the 

The  Last  Four   Years  in  Belgium.  gq 

"Belgian  Workingmen's  Party"  notified  the  Burgomaster  of 
Brussels  that  the  workingmen  would  make  a  demonstration  in 
favor  of  universal  suffrage,  on  June  13th,  that  they  would  to  the 
number  of  from  80,000  to  100,000  parade  through  the  streets  of 
Brussels,  and  that,  on  behalf  of  the  workingmen's  party,  he  re- 
quested that  the  military  should  not  be  called  upon  to  preserve 
order.  M.  Buls,  the  Burgomaster,  who  had,  probably,  learned  by 
this  time  the  risks  of  rioting,  answered  that  under  the  circumstances 
he  considered  it  his  duty  to  forbid  any  public  demonstration.  The 
Government,  on  the  30th,  gave  notice  that  the  procession  would 
not  be  allowed.  This  was  a  costly  set-back  for  the  organizers  of 
the  demonstration,  as  money  had  been  already  distributed  among 
the  workingmen  to  encourage  them  to  be  present,  and  they  had 
been  furnished  with  pistols  at  the  low  price  of  two  francs  apiece. 
As  the  13th  of  June  approached  rumors  were  rife  in  Brussels  that 
the  socialist  leaders  were  preparing  for  a  demonstration.  The 
people  took  fright.  Factories,  banks,  and  shops  were  closed. 
But  the  alarm  was  false.  The  agitators  were  satisfied  to  show 
their  power  by  inaugurating  strikes,  on  that  day,  at  Ghent,  Char- 
leroi,  and  Seraing.  There  the  red  flag  was  unfurled,  amid  cries 
of  "  Vive  la  Republiqtiey  A  congress  of  workingmen  issued  an 
address  to  the  country,  advising  that  the  workingmen's  party 
should  contest  all  elections,  and  proposing  a  general  strike,  and 
they  gave  notice  of  a  "  monster "  demonstration  to  be  held  on 
August  15th,  the  Belgian  national  feast-day.  Should  this  be 
prohibited,  they  threatened  a  strike  throughout  the  length  and 
breadth  of  the  country  on  the  day  following.  The  Congress 
adjourned  on  June  15th.  Here  area  few  pearls  that  dropped  from 
the  mouth  of  the  gentleman  who  made  the  closing  speech.  "  To 
us  belongs  the  State,  with  its  laws  and  its  powers.  We  will  make 
of  Belgium  a  paradise,  and  expel  the  priests,  the  exploiteurs,  and 
everything  else  opprobrious  and  shameful."  Evidently  this 
thoroughgoing  reformer  had  studied  a  Liberal  Catechism,  and 
thus  failed  to  grasp  the  distinction  between  a  paradise  and  a  hell. 
Finally,  these  good  brothers  passed  a  resolution  recommending 
that  the  Socialists  should  boycott  the  bourgeoisie.  On  July  4th  the 
workmen's  party  made  public  a  second  threat  of  a  general  strike 
should  the  demonstration  of  August  15th  be  interfered  with. 
Meantime  the  Radicals,  Socialists,  and  Anarchists  fell  to  fighting. 
The  Socialists  repudiated  the  Radicals — place-hunters  they  called 
them — who  had  heretofore  been  the  directing  spirits.  The  Anar- 
chists rejected  both  the  other  parties.  Universal  suffrage  they  pro- 
nounced mere  flummery.  The  only  cure  for  social  evils,  they  as- 
serted, was  revolution,  and  then  anarchy.  At  last  the  long  talked 
of  day  arrived.     The  Government  fixed  the  route  of  the  proces- 

35  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

sion;  posted  6oo  police  and  gensdarmes  at  fitting  points;  called 
out  6000  of  the  civic  guard  ;  put  the  garrison  of  6000  men  under 
arms,  and  garrisoned  the  neighboring  towns.  The  promised  lOO,- 
ODO  men  numbered  in  fact  only  15,000.  They  carried  the  red  flag 
and  the  Phrygian  cap  instead  of  the  national  colors ;  shouted  for 
Amnesty,  the  Republic,  and  Universal  Suffrage,  and  then,  no  doubt, 
followed  the  needless  suggestion  of  the  organ  of  the  Ghent  So- 
cialists, "to  go  to  the  public  houses — there  to  discuss  with  the 
people  on  the  premises  the  usefulness  and  necessity  of  universal 
suffrage."  Certainly  this  "  monster  "  demonstration  was  a  poor 
return  to  the  workingmen  and  the  country  for  the  seventy  men 
who  had  been  killed  in  the  riots ;  for  the  losses  in  wages,  the  de- 
struction of  property,  the  increased  local  and  general  taxation. 
The  glass  industry  was  ruined,  the  communes  were  mulcted  by  the 
courts  for  extraordinary  damages,  the  Government  had  to  bring  in 
a  bill  indemnifying  private  owners  for  grave  losses.  Prices  rose, 
and  the  iron  and  coal  interests  lost  their  own  market  through  the 
competition  of  the  French  and  German  mines.  Numbers  of  na- 
tives and  foreigners  were  jailed,  indicted,  tried,  and  condemned  to 
lengthy  terms  of  imprisonment. 

The  Government  did  not  wait  for  the  settlement  of  the  strikes, 
or  the  putting  down  of  the  riots,  to  show  its  honest  interest  in  the 
condition  of  the  workingmen.  A  committee  of  twenty-six  mem- 
bers of  the  Chambers  was  appointed  in  March,  1886,  to  inquire 
into  the  condition  of  the  working  people,  and  to  formulate  and 
present  such  reformatory  laws  as  might  be  found  needful.  This 
committee  began  its  sittings  in  April,  and  has  since,  from  time  to 
time,  reported  many  beneficial  measures. 

The  wages  of  the  Belgian  workingmen  are  low.  Fortunately 
the  cost  of  living  is  proportionately  low.  Our  own  coal  miners 
have  good  reason  to  find  fault  in  odd  years.  But,  if  report  speak 
true,  they  have  more  reason  to  blame  the  operators  than  the  Bel- 
gian miners  have.  There  are  149  separate  coal  companies  in 
Belgium.  In  the  eight  years  from  1876  to  1884  one-half  of  these 
were  operated  at  a  loss,  whose  total  amount  figured  up  to  14,700,- 
000  dollars.  The  gross  profits  of  the  paying  mines  within  the 
same  period  amounted  to  18,500,000  dollars.  Had  the  gaining 
operators  paid  off  the  losses  of  the  less  fortunate  companies  the 
total  profits  of  the  business  of  the  eight  years  would  have  been 
less  than  4,000,000  dollars,  less  than  2  per  cent,  on  the  capital  in- 
vested. The  year  1884  was  especially  unfavorable.  While  the 
miners  received  56  per  cent,  of  the  gross  income,  the  operators 
received  only  i  per  cent,  and  a  small  fraction.  Had  the  whole  of 
the  profits  been  given  to  the  miners  they  would  have  had  a  cent  a 

TJie  Last  Four   Years  in  Belgium.  87 

day  additional.  Besides  the  dulness  of  trade  that  has  been  felt 
the  world  over,  the  Belgian  mines  have  had  to  contend  with  two 
special  factors  which  time  cannot  modify — the  competition  of  the 
French  and  German  mines  and  the  great  depth  which  the  Belgian 
mines  have  reached.  Still  there  were  abuses  that  could  be  reme- 
died. The  "  truck  "  system,  no  longer  a  benefit  with  our  modern 
means  of  distribution,  was  found  to  be  more  extensively  practised 
than  had  been  supposed.  The  commission  promptly  brought  in  a 
law  abolishing  the  system.  And  they  have  since  passed  a  law ' 
forbidding  a  vicious  custom  that  had  come  into  vogue  in  the  mines 
the  employment  of  young  girls.  The  laws  presented  and  passed, 
in  the  interest  of  workingmen  generally,  are  numerous.  One 
makes  it  unlawful  to  pay  a  workingman's  wages  otherwise  than  in 
cash.  Another  makes  inalienable  two-fifths  of  a  workingman's 
pay.  Still  another  provides  that,  where  town  improvements  make 
inroads  on  existing  buildings,  a  certain  proportion  of  the  land 
expropriated  shall  be  reserved  for  workingmen's  houses. 

Alcoholism  is  the  vice  of  the  day,  and  the  workingman's  greatest 
enemy.  Here  we  suffer  quite  enough  from  it.  But  a  journey 
through  Belgium  would  make  a  moderate  American  drinker  think 
himself  a  total  abstainer.  A  fair  picture  of  the  situation  is  given 
in  the  following  extract  from  a  Flanders  journal,  published  in  the 
London  Times  of  Sept.  i8th,  1888  :  "  The  daily  consumption  of  a 
workingman — not  a  drunkard — is,  at  5.30  a.m.,  a  '*  worm  killer  "  ; 
at  8  A.M.,  an  "  eye-opener  " ;  at  1 1  a.m.,  a  "  whip  " ;  at  2  p.m.,  a  "  di- 
gester"; at  5  p.m.,  a  "soldier";  at  7.30,  p.m.,  a  "finisher."  His 
yearly  expenditure,  without  counting  extra  drinks  on  festivals,  is 
219  francs — out  of  800  to  1 200  francs."  Should  universal  suffrage 
ever  come  to  Belgium,  a  provision  that  this  variety  of  workingman 
should  cast  his  vote  before  10.30  a.m.  would  not  be  amiss.  Still 
the  subject  is  too  serious  for  even  a  passing  joke ;  and  the  com- 
mission, recognizing  its  seriousness,  brought  in  several  bills  with 
a  view  to  remedying  the  evil.  By  law  the  number  of  drinking 
places  is  fixed  according  to  population.  The  right  to  sue  for 
public-house  debts  has  been  abolished.  The  sale  of  liquor  is  for- 
bidden in  disorderly  houses.  Every  publican  convicted  of  selling 
drink  to  an  intoxicated  person,  or  to  minors,  is  punished  with  fine 
and  imprisonment;  and  the  same  penalty  attaches  to  every  person 
found  drunk  in  a  public  place.. 

In  the  interest  of  harmony  between  workingmen  and  employers, 
and  of  the  peaceful  development  of  trade,  the  commission  passed 
a  bill  establishing  "  Councils  of  Industry  and  Labor,"  councils  of 
conciliation  made  up  of  employers  and  employed.  These  councils 
have  no  legal  standing  as  boards  of  arbitration.     They  are  rather 

SS  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

standing  committees  of  negotiation.  In  France  they  have  done 
good  service,  and  they  are  certainly  an  advance  on  "  Strike  Com- 
mittees," hastily  appointed  in  times  of  excitement.  Just  now  the 
tendency  is  to  co-operation,  or  some  Hke  form  of  corporate  organi- 
zation. To  meet  this  tendency  the  commission  reported  in  favor 
of  Hberty  of  corporate  financial  association. 

Following  Germany,  though  at  a  long  distance,  the  commission 
brought  in  a  law  for  the  assurance  of  workingmen.  Assurance  is 
made  obligatory,  but  the  State  takes  no  responsibility  upon  itself. 
The  system  is  carried  out  by  means  of  syndicates  of  workingmen 
and  employers ;  the  State  does  not  guarantee  the  operations  of  the 
syndicates.  Giving  an  impetus  to  a  system  which  she  assumes  to 
be  necessary  under  the  present  conditions,  the  State  leaves  the 
working  of  the  system  wholly  to  those  who  are  directly  interested 
in  it ;  and  here  at  least  avoids  the  dangers  of  Bismarckian  State 

Alcoholism  is  bad,  but  at  its  worst  it  is  not  so  hurtful  to  society 
as  "free  love."  The  European  laws  that  were  made  long  ago  to 
meet  other  social  conditions  are  largely  to  blame  for  the  debasing 
and  mischievous  system  of  concubinage  which  has  developed 
among  all  classes,  but  especially  among  the  workingmen.  In  Bel- 
gium, as  in  France,  the  law  forbade  a  man  to  marry  before  his 
twenty-fifth  year  without  the  consent  of  his  parents  or  guardians. 
And,  in  addition,  the  law  had  encumbered  the  ceremony  of  mar- 
riage with  a  number  of  costly  formalities.  Official  inquiries  made 
in  France,  as  well  as  in  Belgium,  have  proved  that  to  these  re- 
straints on  lawful  marriage  the  prevalent  habit  of  temporary  unions 
is  in  good  part  chargeable.  Outside  of  any  question  of  morals 
the  State  has  necessarily  a  deep  interest  in  the  regularity  and  per- 
manence of  the  marriage  tie.  On  this  depends  the  very  existence 
of  the  State.  The  Belgian  Commission,  having  traced  the  social 
cause  of  the  evil,  promptly  reported  the  facts,  and  the  necessary 
conclusions  ;  and  Woeste,  the  brave  supporter  of  Malou  and  Jacobs, 
as  good  a  deputy  as  minister,  promptly  brought  in  a  bill  doing 
away  with  the  old-time  requirements  as  to  age  and  parental  au- 
thority, and  obliging  the  municipalities  to  furnish  free  of  charge  all 
the  papers  requisite  for  a  legal  marriage,  where  the  parties  to  the 
contract  were  unable  to  bear  the  expense.  Liberality  in  the  matter 
of  documents  is  vastly  more  commendable  than  liberalism  in  the 
more  intimate  relations  of  the  sexes. 

The  commission  has  dealt  with  many  other  details  of  the  actual 
social  life  of  Belgium.  It  has  presented  valuable  reports  on  ques- 
tions not  as  yet  touched  by  legislation,  and  it  is  still  engaged  in 
studying  the  immediate  needs  of  society,  with  a  view  to  the  future 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium.  So 

as  well  as  to  the  present  welfare  of  the  people.^  The  Belgian  Radi- 
cal revolutionaries  did  not  look  with  favor  on  the  appointment  of 
the  commission  ;  nor  were  they  pleased  with  the  reforms  it  so 
promptly  introduced.  Peace  and  concord  form  no  part  of  the 
creed  of  Belgian  Liberals,  Radicals,  Socialists,  or  Anarchists.  At 
first  they  sought  to  prevent  the  workingmen  from  going  before  the 
commission  to  testify  as  to  their  grievances  and  their  real  condi- 
tion. There  were,  though,  enough  of  sensible,  law-abiding  men  to 
make  the  Radical  scheme  a  failure.  Then,  as  usual,  an  appeal  was 
made  to  force — the  strike  and  the  riot.  On  January  i6th,  1887 
the  miners  at  Charleroi  struck.  In  February  a  committee  met  and 
voted  to  order  a  general  strike.  No  more  was  heard  of  this  de- 
cision until  the  middle  of  March,  when  the  miners  and  quarrymen 
in  certain  sections  stopped  work.  These  strikes  lasted  only  a  few 
weeks,  however.  In  May  the  movement  showed  new  life.  The 
colliers  began;  the  metal  workers  followed.  Then  the  mechanics 
and  others  in  the  towns,  and  especially  in  Ghent,  Louvain,  and 
Brussels,  lent  a  hand.  The  cry  was  for  universal  suffrage  and 
amnesty  to  the  convicted  rioters  of  1886.  The  true  source  and 
motive  of  the  strikes  was  made  plain  by  the  address  of  the 
Workmen's  League  at  Charleroi,  which  invited  the  support  of  the 
electors  on  the  ground  that  the  strike  was  essentially  political. 
The  old  tactics  were  followed  with  some  slight  modern  improve- 
ments. Of  course,  the  gensdarmes  were  handled  roughly,  the  re- 
volver played  its  usual  part,  and  dynamite  was  freely  used  to  de- 
stroy bridges  and  private  property,  and  even  to  kill  '^  brothers  " 
who  would  not  join  the  strikers.  The  German  and  French  Anar- 
chists* were  on  the  ground,  as  cheery,  and  charitable,  and  crack- 
brained  as  ever.  They  recommended  that  all  industrial  establish- 
ments should  be  blown  sky-high.  On  May  26th  the  Committee 
on  General  Strike  made  a  bold  move.  They  sent  a  letter  to  Pre- 
mier Bernaert  notifying  him  that  if,  by  the  29th  of  the  month,  he 
had  not  decided  to  adopt  universal  suffrage,  dissolve  the  Chambers, 
and  call  a  Constituent  Assembly,  he  alone  would  have  to  bear  the 
responsibility  for  whatever  calamities  might  occur.  Meantime  a 
Radical  Congress  gathered  in  Brussels,  and  on  that  fatal  day,  the 
29th,  they  debated  the  question  of  universal  suffrage.     A  resolu- 

J  To  M.  Claudio  Jannet's  articles,  Les  Faits  Economiques  et  le  Mouvemeni  Social, 
which  have  appeared  from  time  to  time  in  Le  Correspondanty  the  writer  is  indebted  for 
certain  details  concerning  the  reports  of  this  Commission.  Temperately 'discussing,  as 
they  do,  every  phase  of  the  economic  and  social  movements  of  the  day,  these  articles 
are  of  the  highest  value.  A  translation  of  them  would  be  of  real  service  to  American 
workingmen  and  employers. 

CO  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Reviczv. 

tion  favoring  it  was  voted  down.  The  largest  suffrage  the  Radi- 
cals were  willing  to  give  was  an  educational  suffrage — a  very  con- 
servative suffrage  indeed.  The  bubble  was  pricked.  Within  a  few 
days  it  had  collapsed.  The  strikers  returned  to  work,  and  partial 
peace  reigned.  Since  that  time  there  have  been  occasional  local 
disturbances,  but  no  organized  general  movement.  When  it  was 
evident  that  the  agitators  had  given  up  the  fight,  the  Government 
showed  its  policy  towards  the  rioters  of  1886.  As  might  be  ex- 
pected, it  was  a  policy  of  moderation.  On  November  8th  the 
Minister  of  Justice  announced  that  the  Ministry  purposed  a  large 
exercise  of  clemency  in  favor  of  the  men  convicted  as  rioters  in 
1886.  The  extent  of  this  measure  appeared  in  the  royal  decree  of 
December  4th,  by  which  the  terms  of  imprisonment  of  a  number 
of  the  guilty  parties  were  reduced  about  two-thirds. 

While  patiently,  prudently,  courageously  laboring  for  the  liberty 
of  the  citizens  and  internal  peace,  the  Conservative-Catholic  Min- 
istry has  been  as  careful  of  the  defence  of  the  country  against 
external  enemies.  The  geographical  position  of  Belgium,  border- 
ing on  the  two  unfriendly  powers,  France  and  Germany,  renders 
her  liable  to  invasion  at  any  moment.  The  smallness  of  her  popu- 
lation, as  well  as  of  her  army,  makes  it  evident  that,  if  she  is  to  pre- 
serve her  neutrality  in  case  of  war,  and  to  hinder  her  two  warlike 
neighbors  from  turning  Belgium  into  a  frightful  battle-ground,  she 
must  be  protected  by  a  strong  system  of  fortifications.  In  his 
instructive  articles  on  the  present  European  military  conditions, 
Sir  Charles  Dilke  pointed  out  Belgium's  dangers  and  her  weak 
points.  The  Bernaert  Ministry  saw  the  one  and  the  other,  and  at 
an  early  day  took  up  the  subject  of  the  country's  defence.  After 
careful  consultation  with  high  military  authorities,  the  Minister  of 
War  designed  a  plan  of  fortifications  along  the  Meuse,  intended  to 
secure  the  country  from  invasion  on  the  French  side,  where  it  v/as 
peculiarly  exposed.  When  the  Government's  proposal  was  sub- 
mitted to  the  Chamber  of  Deputies  it  met  with  a  strong  opposition 
from  the  Radical-Liberals  under  Frere-Orban.  To  explain  this 
unpatriotic  opposition  is  not  easy.  One  would  hesitate  before 
charging  the  Radical-Liberals  with  a  desire  to  expose  the  country 
to  French  invasion.  However,  the  opposition  was  fruitless.  On 
June  14th,  1 887,  the  Chamber  of  Deputies  passed  the  Government 
bill.  The  Senate  approved  it  on  the  24th  of  the  same  month.  By 
this  time  the  great  work  is  well  on  the  way  to  completion.  Meas- 
ures have  been  taken  to  arm  these  forts  with  the  best  modern 
cannon ;  and  the  country  will  soon  have  the  satisfaction  of  feeling 
that  should  either  Germany  or  France  force  a  way  into  Belgian  ter- 
ritory it  will  not  be  chargeable  to  Belgian  neglect.     The  importance 

The  Last  Four  Years  in  Belgium,  gj 

of  these  fortifications  along  the  Meuse  is  confirmed  by  the  foreign 
telegrams  of  the  month  of  October,  1888.  The  French  press  de- 
nounces them  as  "  excessive  measures  of  defence."  Madame  J. 
Adam,  who  knows  everything,  charges  that  there  is  a  secret  treaty 
between  the  King  of  the  Belgians  and  Bismarck  as  against  France. 
There  are  rumors  that  the  French  Government  "  will  soon  present 
a  note  to  the  Belgian  Government  expressing  surprise  that,  being 
assured  that  its  neutrality  would  be  respected  in  the  event  of  a 
Continental  war,  Belgium  should  take  such  precautions."  Anony- 
mous French  staff-officers  are  writing  letters  to  the  press  showing 
how  unlikely  it  is  that  the  Germans  will  want  to  attack  France  by 
way  of  Belgium,  and  how  certain  it  is  that  France  would  not  think 
of  doing  what  Germany  cannot  be  thinking  of  doing.  Evidently 
the  French  would  prefer  to  have  the  line  of  the  Meuse  open,  or 
else  they  are  busy  strengthening  some  distant  part  of  their  own 
territory.  And  evidently  the  fortification  of  the  Meuse  was  not 
begun  a  day  too  early,  and  cannot  be  finished  a  day  too  soon. 

In  this  review  of  the  internal  and  external  policy  of  the  present 
Conservative-Catholic  Government  of  Belgium,  we  have  omitted 
many  subjects  of  more  or  less  interest  to  the  student  of  modern 
political  or  social  life.  But  the  world  runs  so  fast  that  whoever 
would  deal  critically  with  four  years  of  government  in  the  smallest 
of  countries  must  needs  write  a  book,  and  not  an  article.  The 
course  of  Belgian  affairs  tells  more  of  hope  and  suggestion  to  the 
lovers  of  liberty,  moderation,  prudence,  justice,  peace  and  practical 
politics  than  that  of  any  other  European  nationality.  Rightly  the 
world  should  have  but  two  parties :  the  party  of  liberty  and  progress, 
and  the  party  of  tyranny  and  retrogression.  In  the  former  party 
all  the  Christian  elements  of  society  would  be  joined,  had  reason 
or  the  spirit  of  Christianity,  or  even  plain  interest,  full  sway.  As 
it  is,  they  are  divided  by  supposed  interests,  petty  interests  of  de- 
nomination, dynasties,  clubs  and  cliques.  Were  not  the  French 
royalists  and  imperialists  of  all  shades  so  greatly  exercised  about 
corpses,  living  and  dead,  and  about  words  that  have  ceased  to 
have  a  meaning,  true  liberty  would  have  made  vast  strides  in 
France  during  the  last  quarter  of  a  century,  and  the  country 
would  not  now  be  compelled  to  consider  a  revision  of  the  Consti- 
tution in  the  interest  of  persons  rather  than  of  ideas.  Italians  have 
been  bound  hand  and  foot  by  a  policy  whose  wisdom  it  is  not 
allowed  to  question,  but  which,  for  the  time  being,  has  been  a  try- 
ing one  for  the  friends  of  good  government  and  the  largest  free- 
dom. Let  us  hope  that  when  diplomacy  has  solved  the  "  Roman 
Question  " — and  it  must  in  time  solve  it,  unless  European  Govern- 
ments are  anxious  that  the  Italian  people  shall,  like  the  Irish,  take 

92  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

matters  into  their  own  vigorous  hands — the  sons  of  the  men  who  suf- 
fered so  much  to  free  their  country  from  the  grasp  of  the  foreigner, 
and  who  fought  in  the  field  and  the  forum  for  a  unity  of  hearts,  re- 
gardless of  royal  dynasties,  may  have  learned  from  Belgium  how  to 
use  wisely  the  government  that  must  come  under  their  direction, 
and  how  to  accommodate  themselves  to  realities.  The  sacrifice 
of  principle  can  never  be  a  question  where  the  men  who  lead  have 
only  the  public  weal  at  heart  Four  years  of  Conservative-Catho- 
lic Government  in  Belgium  have  made  this  clear.  To-day  every 
individual  or  group  that  favors  peace,  material  progress,  moral 
well-doing,  freedom  and  independence,  stands  firmly  by  the 
Catholic- Conservative  Government.  And  the  Government  has 
been  careful  to  recognize  this  fact.  It  has  a  right  measure  of  the 
country  and  the  times.  When  in  October,  1887,  Thonissen  re- 
signed from  the  Ministry,  warned  by  the  weight  of  years,  and 
anxious  to  finish  his  long-contemplated  history  of  the  criminal 
law  before  death  had  stopped  him,  the  Ministry  filled  his  place 
with  a  young  lawyer,  M.  Lejeune,  who  was  known  as  a  moderate 
Liberal.  In  the  work  of  African  civilization,  which  now  moves  all 
foreign  governments,  partly  from  a  spirit  of  civilization,  partly 
from  a  spirit  of  enterprise,  and  not  a  little  from  a  spirit  of  greed, 
Belgium  has  taken  a  leading  part.  Her  king  has  been  officially 
authorized  to  assume  the  Presidency  of  the  Congo  State,  but  Bel- 
gium has  assumed  no  responsibility  for  the  venture.  Without  seek- 
ing purely  selfish  interests,  she  has  pointed  and  led  the  way  of  civil- 

Here,  in  the  United  States,  the  old  spirit  of  liberty  is  strong.  By 
father  and  son  it  has  been  nourished,  cherished.  North  and  South, 
East  and  West.  But  the  spirit  of  disorder,  intolerance,  illiberal- 
ity,  force,  irreligion,  socialism,  revolution,  anarchy,  grows  too  rap- 
idly year  by  year.  Counter  to  these  harmful  notions,  encouraged 
by  them,  the  no  less  fatal  doctrines  of  centralization  are  making 
headway.  Are  Christians  here  to  learn  nothing  from  the  past  or 
the  present  ?  Are  they  ready  to  sacrifice  liberty,  decency,  religion, 
the  future  realization  of  the  highest  of  human  hopes  and  aspira- 
tions, on  the  altar  of  sectarian  prejudices  and  foreign  spites  ?  Seek- 
ing little  things,  will  they  lose  their  hold  on  the  great  things  for 
which  their  fathers  prayed  and  suffered  ?  Surely  not.  Let  them 
lift  themselves  beyond  the  narrow  bounds  that  limit  religious  and 
national  prejudices,  in  great  part  the  result  of  imperfect  education 
and  the  hypocritical,  selfish  efforts  of  parasites  and  designing  poli- 
ticians ;  let  them  seek  the  ground  of  unity,  and  not  the  line  of 
certain  division ;  let  there  be  mutual  sacrifice  or  independence  in 
things  not  essential,  but  in  essential  things,  where  personal  liberty. 

The  Last  Four   Years  in  Belgium.  03 

common  morality,  the  Ten  Commandments,  justice  between  indi- 
viduals, are  at  stake,  let  there  be  unity. 

To  Catholics,  as  well  as  non-Catholics,  the  way  of  unity  and  the 
right  method  of  dealing  with  the  political  and  social  questions  of 
the  hour  have  been  pointed  out  by  the  Catholic-Conservative  party 
of  Belgium.  In  this  little  country  the  lovers  of  true  freedom  could 
rightly  set  up  a  statue  of  Liberty  enlightening  the  world. 

We  should  not,  however,  pin  our  faith  to  any  party  or  coun- 
try. The  difficulties  of  a  party  really  begin  only  when  the  coun- 
try has  shown  its  full  confidence  in  certain  men  and  measures. 
Then  ambitions,  baser  interests,  jobbery,  and  the  imaginings  of 
the  doctrinaire  begin  to  be  felt.  Large  majorities  create  a  sense  of 
security  and  a  spirit  of  carelessness  which  in  time  lead  to  division, 
harmful  compromise,  or  positive  wrong.  Judging  the  present 
Belgian  Ministry  by  its  past,  we  may  have  confidence  in  its  integ- 
rity of  purpose,  wide  vision  and  patriotism ;  but  time  alone  can 
tell  what  obstacles  the  makers  of  the  new  era  may  meet  with  from 
the  men  who  now  give  them  the  most  cordial  support.  Whatever 
the  future,  and  there  is  every  reason  to  have  a  still  larger  hope,  let 
us  learn  the  good  lessons  which  the  last  four  years  of  Belgian 
politics  have  taught  all  fair  men  who  are  willing  to  learn. 

94  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 


POPULAR  agitation  against  Catholics  in  the  United  States 
seems  to  mark  the  years  with  double  numbers,  such  as  1833, 
1844,  1855,  and  that  which  has  just  expired  has  done  something 
to  merit  a  place  in  the  category.  The  agitation  of  1833  culminated 
in  the  burning  of  the  Ursuline  Convent  at  Charlestown  by  a  mob, 
and  it  is  strange  that,  in  half  a  century  of  progress,  the  most  en- 
lightened city  in  the  country  still  shows  to  the  world  that,  in  fifty 
years,  it  has  learned  nothing  in  some  departments  of  human  knowl- 
edge, and  has  thousands  still  slaves  of  ignorant  prejudice,  ready  to 
be  swayed  and  led  on  by  fanatical  appeals.  The  good  people  of 
Boston  know  a  great  deal  more  about  electricity,  early  Greek  art, 
the  site  of  Troy,  Egyptian  antiquities,  the  mineral  resources  of 
America,  methods  of  manufacture,  than  they  did  fifty  years  ago ; 
but  in  regard  to  the  Catholic  Church,  its  organization,  doctrines, 
worship  and  polity,  they  seem  not  to  have  learned  an  iota.  And 
what  is  true  of  that  city,  which  boasts  of  its  superior  culture,  is 
true  of  many  other  places. 

The  intellectual  attitude  of  the  mass  of  non-Catholics  towards 
us  is  one  of  the  most  curious  problems  in  the  world.  When  Catho- 
lics were  few  in  this  country,  and  foreign  travel  uncommon;  when 
the  Catholic  religion  was  believed  to  be  something  that  flourished 
in  the  Middle  Ages,  and  disappeared  in  modern  times  ;  when,  as 
a  Lord  Chancellor  of  England,  once,  putting  the  whole  matter  for 
that  country,  declared  that  Catholics,  in  the  eye  of  the  law,  were  not 
supposed  to  exist  in  England,  one  could  understand  to  some  ex- 
tent that  all  knowledge  about  them  might  be  supposed  to  lurk  only 
among  learned  professors  in  colleges  who  studied  the  matter  up 
in  order  to  obtain  a  definite  idea  of  the  European  nations  during 
the  Middle  Ages ;  but  when  every  large  city  has,  in  its  churches, 
colleges,  schools  and  charitable  institutions,  evidences  that  Catho- 
licity is  an  actual  and  active  reality ;  when  town  and  village  show 
the  same  in  proportion,  it  is  amazing  beyond  conception  that 
people  will  wallow  in  ignorance,  or  rest  on  the  narrow  circle  of  old 
wives'  tales  handed  down  by  prejudice,  rather  than  examine  for 
themselves.  Although  Catholic  books  and  periodicals  can  be  had 
on  all  sides,  they  are  never  examined  ;  no  effort  is  made  to  acquire 
information.  Indeed,  in  many  minds  there  is  the  latent,  if  unex- 
pressed, idea  that  Catholic  books  are  imbued  with  a  kind  of  witch- 
craft ;  that  they  have  some  subtle  power  that  blinds  a  person  to 


Bostonian  Ignorance  of  Catholic  Doctrine.  95 

his  better  judgment  if  he  touches  them,  and  convinces  him  against 
his  will  and  his  reason. 

Nearly  fifty  years  ago  Catholics  in  New  York,  who  had  been 
deprived,  for  no  fault  of  theirs,  of  a  share  of  the  school  money, 
asked  its  restoration,  showing  that  in  the  schools  of  the  Public 
School  Society,  a  private  corporation  which  enjoyed  the  monopoly, 
there  were  books  and  teaching  so  imbued  with  hostility  or  con- 
tempt for  Catholics  that  they  could  not  send  their  children  to 
them.  The  Protestant  clergy  rallied  to  the  support  of  the  School 
Society,  every  old  charge  possible  was  revived  against  Catholics, 
and  a  new  one,  utterly  false,  that  Catholics  had  asked  to  have  the 
Bible  banished  from  the  schools,  became  a  stock  accusation,  main- 
tained to  this  day,  and  which  still  finds  dupes  to  believe  it. 

So,  this  year,  in  Boston,  an  American  priest  called  the  attention 
of  the  School  Board  to  a  misrepresentation  of  Catholic  doctrine  by 
a  teacher.  That  gentleman  fell  back  on  a  history  used  in  the 
schools,  and  continued  to  present  his  views  of  Catholic  doctrine  in 
more  and  more  offensive  forms,  till  the  Board  struck  the  book 
from  the  list  and  assigned  the  teacher  to  another  department. 
Then,  as  fifty  years  ago,  numbers  of  Protestant  clergymen  who, 
not  without  good  grounds,  consider  the  public  schools  part  of 
their  system  and  property,  began  a  vehement  campaign  against 
the  Catholic  religion,  denouncing  it,  and  all  who  adhered  to  it,  in 
every  possible  form.  Many  of  the  leading  newspapers  aided  the 
onslaught.  The  whole  matter  became  a  political  issue,  and  even 
women  were  stimulated  to  rush  to  the  polls  to  save  their  religion, 
if  not  their  lives  and  homes.  And,  in  fact,  they  voted  by  thou- 
sands, knowing  as  little  as  the  men  what  the  merits  of  the  case 
really  were.  If  it  has  been  right  that  Protestants  should  have  ex- 
clusive control  of  the  public  schools,  as  they  have  had  these  many 
years,  it  must  be  equally  right  for  Catholics  to  do  the  same  when 
they  can.  A  Protestant  journal  says  :  '*  It  is  abominable  that  this 
very  denomination  should  be  at  the  same  time  struggling  to  get 
control  of  their  management,  their  text-books,  and  their  teachers." 
If  the  control  by  Catholics  would  be  abominable,  that  by  Protes- 
tants must  be,  if  both  are  citizens  with  equal  rights. 

What  an  indulgence  is,  as  taught  by  the  Catholic  Church,  could 
be  as  easily  ascertained  as  what  an  electric  dynamo  is.  The  Catho- 
lic Church  is  an  institution  existing  throughout  the  world.  It 
has  the  decrees  of  Councils,  defining  its  faith.  It  has  dogmatic 
and  catechetical  works  for  the  ordinary  guidance  of  its  priesthood 
and  the  instruction  of  the  faithful.  Any  person  of  common  sense 
would  say :  Let  us  examine  these  and  take  the  definitions  given 
there.  But  people  of  common  sense  seem  few  in  number.  Objec- 
tions are  made  that  the  books  used  by  Catholics  in  this  country 

96  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

are  adapted  for  Protestant  countries,  yet  books  printed  in  Catholic 
countries  might  readily  be  had.  If  others  averred  that  doctrines 
had  changed,  and  that,  in  former  times,  different  definitions  were 
given,  and  different  ideas  and  practices  prevailed,  still  the  fact  re- 
mains that  printing  was  invented  in  Catholic  times,  and  that  for 
more  than  half  a  century  before  Protestantism  arose,  and  down  to 
this  time,  presses  have  teemed  with  Catholic  books.  It  would  be 
the  easiest  thing  in  the  world  for  any  great  library,  like  Harvard, 
to  make  a  collection  of  Catholic  books,  showing  what  indulgences 
were  held  to  be,  at  all  times,  and  in  all  countries,  from  the  inven- 
tion of  printing  to  the  present  time.  This  would  be  the  best  pri- 
mary evidence  on  that  point,  as  a  collection  of  missals  would  be  of 
the  form  of  the  liturgy  during  that  period. 

Yet,  in  all  that  was  written,  said  and  printed  during  the  heated 
discussion  in  Boston,  no  one  seems  to  have  taken  this  plain,  com- 
mon-sense way  of  ascertaining  what  Catholics  hold  an  indulgence 
to  be. 

There  are  quaint  little  handbooks,  like  DeBurgo's  Pupilla  Oculi^ 
1 5 10;  \\\^  Discipidus  de  Erudition e  Chrisii  Fidelium,  1504;  Man- 
ipulns  Clericorurn,  1530,  printed  for  the  use  of  the  parochial  clergy 
in  England,  France  and  Germany,  which  would  afford  any  really 
honest  inquirer  a  knowledge  of  what  doctrine  was  then  actually 
taught  the  people  from  the  pulpit ;  but  it  is  useless  even  to  expect 
any  such  intelligent  examination.  Catholics  puzzled  at  the  mental 
phenomenon  of  intelligent  people  preferring  darkness  to  light,  and 
error  to  truth,  can  only  pray  that  God  would  "  take  away  the  veil 
from  their  hearts." 

The  result  of  the  Boston  agitation  was  not  commensurate  with 
the  energy  expended.  With  the  pulpit  and  press  inciting  the 
people,  with  women  summoned  to  the  polls,  the  effect  was  slight 
compared  to  other  days.  "  Sometimes  a  convent,  then  a  church  we 
burn,"  did  not  hold  good  ;  but  by  almost  superhuman  exertion 
they  succeeded  in  defeating  a  Catholic  gentleman,  who,  after  hold- 
ing the  office  of.  Mayor  of  Boston  for  four  terms,  a  duration  well- 
nigh  unexampled  in  th^  municipal  history  of  that  city,  was  defeated 
when  a  candidate  for  the  fifth  time ;  and  they  gave  one  more  proof 
of  the  essentially  Protestant  character  of  the  public  schools  by  pre- 
venting the  election  of  any  Catholic  to  the  School  Board.  As 
these  same  people  are  complaining  of  Catholics  for  withdrawing 
their  children  from  the  public  schools,  it  was  rather  unwise  to 
make  their  anti-Catholic  spirit  and  management  so  distinctly  ap- 

The  spirit  of  hostility  to  the  Church,  which  showed  itself  fifty 
or  sixty  years  ago  in  the  violence  committed  by  the  poor  mis- 
guided dupes  of  men   who   should  have   known  better,  and  had 

Bostonian  Ignorance  of  Catholic  Doctrine.  97 

hearts  to  teach  them  better,  still  prevails,  and  on  occasion  can  be 
roused,  but  it  is  less  generally  diffused,  and  is  diminishing  in  in- 
tensity. The  sermons  of  1888  led  to  none  of  the  crimes  caused 
by  those  of  earlier  days. 

Protestantism  is  losing  its  hold  even  in  New  England.  The 
population  of  Colonial  stock  are  dwindling  in  numbers,  and  the 
churches  show  a  decline  greater  even  than  proportionate  numeri- 
cal loss.  The  young  rarely  become  church  members,  the  Sunday 
School  and  Young  Men's  Christian  Associations  seem  to  supplant 
rather  than  aid  the  churches.  Protestantism  never  was  a  religion, 
nor  had  the  elements  of  one.  It  has  no  priesthood,  no  settled  dogma, 
no  essential  act  of  divine  worship.  In  our  times  the  cold  Calvin- 
istic  church  service  repels,  as  the  Episcopal,  with  its  new  trap- 
pings, its  vestments,  its  light,  its  spirit  of  gladness,  seems  to  attract 
Protestants.  The  Methodists  and  Baptists  have  outlived  their 
early  energy.  The  decline  is  so  distinctly  felt  that  recruits  for  the 
ministry  are  few.  Zealous  men  are  studying  and  devising  how  to 
draw  promising  young  men  to  the  ministry ;  but  no  result  has 
been  reached.  In  many  parts,  especially  in  New  England,  where 
churches  formerly  had  a  large  membership,  it  has  dwindled  so  that 
they  cannot  secure  ministers.  There  have  been  conventions  to 
know  what  is  to  be  done  to  save  these  churches.  Where  they 
are  of  the  same  denomination,  congregations  can  unite,  and  so  de- 
fer for  a  time  the  imminent  dissolution.  But  in  many  cases  there 
are  four  or  five  churches  in  a  little  town,  each  belonging  to  a  dif- 
ferent organization.  "  A  township  of  5000  population  seldom  has 
more  than  three  churches,"  says  a  Protestant  paper,  "  one  of  which 
is  Roman  Catholic,  and  is  always  well  filled,  and  these  churches  will 
not  seat  more  than  1 200.  The  number  of  people  at  all  the  churches 
on  any  Sunday  morning  is  scarcely  600."  Schemes  for  a  union  of 
denominations  have  been  taken  up,  and  there  is  a  journal.  The 
Church  Union^  especially  devoted  to  advocating  such  a  blending 
together.  The  International  Bible  Lesson  for  Sunday  Schools 
tends  that  way,  and  on  Thanksgiving  Day,  which,  in  the  memory 
of  living  men,  saw  every  Protestant  church  well  filled,  it  is  now 
usual  in  many  places  to  hold  a  union  service  ;  the  most  eloquent 
minister  is  selected, '  and  he  can  barely  fill  one  church,  while 
several  others  are  closed  and  empty.  But  effectual  union  is 
prevented  by  many  minor  causes,  that  of  church-property  not 
being  the  least.  The  questions  of  doctrine,  church  government 
and  form  of  service  present  great  difficulties;  not  a  denomination 
has  any  for  which  any  positive  authority  can  be  shown,  but  each 
clings  to  its  own,  as  though  a  matter  of  positive  divine  revelation. 
With  all  the  labor  to  effect  a  union,  not  a  step  has  been  gained, 
not  even  the  different  bodies  of  a  single  denomination  have  been 
VOL.  XIV. — 7 

q3  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

brought  together.  "  You  have  had  your  Evangelical  Alliance  for 
nearly  fifty  years,  you  have  had  your  famous  Pan-Presbyterian 
Alliance  for  at  least  twelve  years,"  wrote  Rev.  Dr.  Dabney,  when 
he  proceeded  to  show  that  they  had  effected  absolutely  nothing. 
Meanwhile,  the  gradual  disintegration  goes  on.  So  far  as  the 
Catholic  Church  is  concerned,  any  union  between  it  and  the  sects 
that  have  separated  from  it,  and  from  each  other,  has,  of  course, 
become  impossible.  Men  like  Fenelon,  Leibnitz,  Bishop  Doyle, 
believed  it  practicable,  in  their  day,  but  what  might  have  been 
possible  in  the  seventeenth  century,  is  no  longer  so. 

There  is  a  remarkable  difference  between  the  earlier  Oriental 
heresies  and  those  of  the  West  now  embodied  in  Protestantism. 
The  former  turned  almost  entirely  on  questions  relating  to  our 
Lord  ;  but  each  body,  as  formed  apart  from  the  Church,  retained 
a  hierarchy,  priesthood,  the  Mass  as  the  only  sacrifice  or  public 
divine  worship  of  the  New  Law,  the  sacraments  and  most  Catholic 
practices.  The  Greek  schism  touched  the  Papacy  as  the  continuous 
headship  of  Peter.  For  all  or  any  of  these  bodies  to  unite  with 
the  Catholic  Church  again,  required  but  little.  If  any  body,  like 
the  Eutychians  recently,  who,  after  being  fourteen  centuries  out 
of  the  Church,  formally  disavows,  by  an  authoritative  act,  the  par- 
ticular heretical  doctrine  it  has  held,  it  comes  back  with  its  apos- 
tolic succession,  valid  orders.  Mass  and  sacraments.  All  goes  on 
externally  as  before,  but  they  are  Catholics.  Even  the  Greek 
Church  in  Russia,  Greece  and  Turkey  could,  by  a  simple  act 
recognizing  the  supremacy  of  the  Pope,  restore  millions  upon  mil- 
lions to  the  unity  of  faith.  It  would  require  no  change  in  the 
form  of  church  government,  or  in  the  Mass,  or  in  the  administra- 
tion of  the  sacraments,  and  very  little  even  in  the  doctrinal 

But  the  Protestant  movement  carried  with  it  few  bishops,  and 
abandoned  necessarily  the  priesthood  and  the  Mass.  It  has  no 
episcopate  with  apostolic  succession,  no  duly  ordained  priesthood, 
no  sacrifice  of  the  New  Law,  and  now  virtually  no  sacraments,  even 
if  there  were  those  who  could  validly  administer  them.  There  is 
nothing  on  their  side  by  which  a  union  can  be  effected.  They  are 
mere  secessionists,  and  to  come  back  to  the  union  must  acknowl- 
edge the  general  government  of  the  Church  and  its  organization. 
They  have  not  kept  for  three  centuries  what  the  Eutychians  did 
for  fourteen,  but  must  recover  it  all,  and  that  cannot  be  done  with- 
out, but  only  within  the  Church.  No  Protestant  body  can  come 
into  the  Church,  though  individuals  can  and  do. 

Providence  is  shaping  events  so  that  even  in  New  England  the 
faith  is  gaining  a  firm  hold  that  would  have  been  deemed  impos- 
sible a  few  years  ago.     The  fact  that  Boston  has  at  four  successive 

Bostonian  Ignorance  of  Catholic  Doctrine.  gg 

elections  chosen  an  Irish  Catholic  for  Mayor ;  that  in  the  School 
Board  of  that  city  there  are  even  now  eight  Catholic  members, 
shows  a  large  Catholic  body  and  influence  in  Boston ;  the  more  so 
as  Catholic  energy  centring  on  the  erection  and  maintenance  of 
parochial  schools,  our  people  generally  have  come  to  the  convic- 
tion that  no  really  just  and  fair  system  of  public  schools  is  possible, 
and  that  the  best  devised  system  would  constantly  be  made  an 
instrument  of  oppression.  Hence  their  interest  in  the  public 
schools  has  decreased ;  they  leave  them  to  their  fellow-citizens  of 
other  beliefs  and  unbeliefs. 

The  growth  of  the  Catholic  body  in  New  England,  by  natural 
increase,  by  immigration  from  Europe  and  the  descendants  of  more 
recent  incomers,  and  by  the  wonderful  influx  of  French  Canadians 
who  came  at  first  merely  as  denizens,  but  now  remain,  become  citi- 
zens and  settle  down  to  make  the  land  their  home.  They  have  able 
leaders  like  Gagnon,  their  literary  associations,  priests,  churches, 
convents,  schools,  they  are  bilingual,  speaking  both  French  and 
English,  and  increase  rather  than  diminish  the  influence  of  their 
brethren  in  Canada.  A  recent  estimate  fixes  the  number  of  French 
Canadians  in  the  United  States  at  800,000,  five  hundred  thousand 
in  New  York  and  New  England. 

The  whole  Catholic  population  of  New  England  by  the  latest 
data  is,  in  Maine,  70,000 ;  New  Hampshire,  so  long  bitterly  hostile 
to  Catholics,  73,000;  Vermont,  50,000;  Massachusetts,  715,000; 
Rhode  Island,  150,000;  Connecticut,  175,000;  a  total  ot  1,248,000 
in  a  population  of  4,000,000  in  1880.  In  Rhode  Island  the  Cath- 
olic population  is  fully  half  that  of  the  State;  in  Connecticut  I'^'gths; 
in  Massachusetts,  gths ;  the  rate  in  Maine,  New  Hampshire  and 
Vermont  is  smaller,  ranging  from  one-fifth  to  one-ninth. 

Now,  supposing  all  Catholic  immigration  to  cease,  the  Catholic 
gain  would  be  steady.  Of  6638  children  born  alive  in  New  Hamp- 
shire, 2410,  or  four  out  of  every  eleven,  were  baptized  in  Catholic 
churches;  in  Vermont,  2235  out  of  7350  born  alive;  in  Massachu- 
setts, 28,000  out  of  42,735,  fully  two-thirds  ;  and  in  large  cities  like 
Boston  the  Catholic  baptisms  have  for  many  years  exceeded  half 
the  number  of  children  born.  The  births  in  Boston  in  1887 
numbered  12,137,  while  the  Catholic  baptisms  were  7382,  showing 
that  more  than  half  the  new  native  population  of  that  city  is  Catho- 
lic and  of  Catholic  parentage.  This  proportion  is  all  the  more 
striking,  as  within  a  few  years  suburban  towns  of  old  Puritanic 
origin  have  been  brought  within  the  city  limits.  So,  in  Bridge- 
port, Connecticut,  three  Catholic  churches,  in  1887,  baptized  463  ; 
in  Manchester,  N.  H.,  of  1390  children  born,  930  were  baptized 
in  Catholic  Churches.  In  Connecticut  it  is  6700  out  of  14,027, 
or  nearly  half,  and  in  Rhode  Island  3602  out  of  6798,  or  more 

lOO  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

than  half.  Taking  all  New  England  together,  of  77,548  children 
born  alive,  at  least  43,000  were  baptized  in  Catholic  churches. 
The  Catholic  body  would,  therefore,  independent  of  all  accessions 
by  immigration  from  Europe  or  Canada,  gain  steadily.  It  is  a 
common  delusion  that  the  majority  of  Catholics  in  the  United 
States  are  of  foreign  birth.  It  was  not  so  at  the  Revolution,  and 
cannot  be  proved  to  have  been  so  at  any  period.  In  1880  the  for- 
eign-born population  was  some  6,300,000;  the  Catholic  body 
numbered  7,500,000;  and  not  more  than  half  the  foreign  born  can 
be  regarded  as  Catholic  ;  even  allowing  3,500,000  as  their  number, 
this  would  leave  4,000,000  native-born  Catholics  in  the  country. 

As  the  Catholic  births  far  exceed  the  general  average  of  the 
country,  this  native  body  is  growing  at  the  rate  of  250,000  a  year. 

Let  us  consider  New  England  under  another  phase. 

Place  some  of  the  old  Puritan  Fathers  in  Boston  and  other  New 
England  towns  to-day.  Irish  Catholics,  whom  Ward,  one  of  their 
ministers,  characterized  in  his  "  Simple  Cobbler  of  Aggawam  "  as 
"  Bots  of  the  Beast's  Tail,"  would  be  seen  by  them  filling  the  land 
with  their  descendants ;  Catholics  of  Portuguese  origin,  almost  as 
hateful  as  Irish,  swarm  in  all  the  fishing  towns ;  German  Catholics 
are  found  everywhere;  the  Catholics  of  Canada,  for  whose  annihila- 
tion the  old  Puritan  pulpits  so  constantly  rang  with  appeals  that 
every  wall  echoed  them,  now  pour  down  like  an  irresistible  torrent 
on  their  New  England,  conquered  but  conquering  in  turn.  The 
Puritans  of  olden  days  would  be  appalled ;  but  they  would  go  to 
the  meeting-houses  to  revive  their  spirits  and  the  old  religious 
ideas  which  they  had  founded.  Here,  surely,  they  would  expect 
consolation  and  relief  They  strenuously  taught  the  doctrine  of 
the  Trinity,  the  Divinity  of  Christ,  the  Atonement,  Baptismal 
Regeneration,  the  Inspiration  of  the  Scriptures,  the  Church  as 
the  kingdom  of  God  and  a  power  in  a  Christian  commonwealth ; 
they  believed  in  a  Christian  education  of  the  young,  and  from  the 
very  primer  where  their  little  ones  learned  their  letters  they  im- 
bued them  with  these  vital  doctrines.  But  in  the  meeting-houses 
of  to-day  they  would  hear  all  these  things  ignored  or  derided 
and  denied;  and  if  they  spoke  of  religious  education  in  the 
schools,  they  would  be  crushed  with  sarcasm,  taunt,  ridicule 
and  pretentious  arrogance.  They  would  leave  the  meeting- 
houses with  sad  and  heavy  hearts,  and,  looking  up  at  cross- 
crowned  spires,  would  gnash  their  teeth  and  regard  the  evil  result 
as  the  work  of  these  Catholic  intruders  who  had  come  into  their 
fair  heritage.  But,  if  mustering  courage  they  entered  the  Catholic 
churches,  what  would  be  their  amazement  to  hear  every  one  of 
these  doctrines  boldly,  fearlessly  and  plainly  taught ;  they  would 
see  men  called  to  adore  the   Holy  Trinity,  to  look  up  to  Jesus 

Bostonian  Ignorance  of  Catholic  Doctrine.  loi 

Christ  as  our  Redeemer,  making  atonement  for  us,  wiping  away 
original  sin ;  they  would  hear  the  Scriptures  read  as  the  inspired 
word  of  God,  not  put  on  a  level  with  the  Zendavesta  and  the  Koran ; 
they  would  hear  of  baptismal  regeneration,  and  constantly  and 
steadily  would  hear  the  necessity  inculcated  of  blending  religion 
with  education  from  the  first  dawn  of  reason.  Would  they  not  in 
utter  amazement  cast  up  their  hands  and  cry :  Ergo  erravimns  ? 
"  Therefore  we  have  erred  from  the  way  of  truth,  and  the  light  of 
justice  has  not  shined  unto  us:"  "These  are  they,  whom  we  had 
some  time  in  derision,  and  for  a  parable  of  reproach."  "  Behold 
how  they  are  numbered  among  the  children  of  God." 

They  would  turn  from  their  degenerate  descendants  and  admit 
that  the  house  they  had  erected  was  built  on  sand,  and  that  Chris- 
tian hope  was  in  the  Catholic  Church. 

In  sober  reality  such  Christian  truths  as  were  taught  in  New 
England  in  old  Puritan  days  are  now  taught  there  distinctly  only 
by  the  Catholic  Church.  It  is  really  continuing  the  work  of  the 
old  Puritans. 

Anti-Catholic  prejudice  has  outlived  the  doctrines  of  the  Prot- 
estant churches  in  New  England  and  throughout  the  country. 
Secular  education  has  bred  a  dry  rot  on  the  churches,  and  they 
are  sensibly  decaying.  There  is  zeal  in  Sunday-schools,  but  these 
institutions,  while  made  so  as  to  attract  and  interest  children,  do 
not  lead  them  to  love  and  take  part  in  the  church  service ;  they 
simply  replace  it  for  the  young  who,  after  growing  up  in  Sunday- 
schools,  are  virtually  strangers  to  the  church,  and  find  nothing 
there  to  interest  them.  It  is  as  if  our  children  were  taught  their 
catechism,  but  were  never  taken  to  Mass,  and  allowed  to  grow  up 
ignorant  of  it  and  its  meaning  and  consolations.  As  a  matter  of 
course,  few  would  attend  it. 

In  1888  the  anti-Catholic  movement  rose  and  fell  in  Boston; 
but  did  not  spread  through  the  country,  although  the  old  Know- 
Nothing  organization  has  been  revived  and  is  active,  with  papers 
in  several  parts  especially  devoted  to  their  cause ;  but  every  year 
the  increasing  numbers  and  influence  of  Catholics  render  their 
efforts  less  and  less  hurtful  to  the  country.  It  will  never  again 
put  a  Presidential  candidate  in  the  field,  but  confine  itself  to  under- 
hand working  in  order  to  defeat  an  obnoxious  candidate  put  forward 
by  one  of  the  two  great  parties,  or  beset  enough  Senators  to  prevent 
the  confirmation  of  some  Catholic  nominated  by  the  President. 

The  war  on  the  parochial  schools  begun  in  Massachusetts  may 
be  revived  and  imitated  elsewhere,  but  this  seems  scarcely  prob- 
able. It  failed  in  the  first  grand  onset,  and  it  will  not  be  easy  to 
rally  the  same  strength  again. 

I02  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

To  all  appearance  the  periodical  attack  on  the  Catholic  body 
has  passed,  and  if  it  is  renewed  in  the  last  year  of  the  century,  it 
will,  so  far  as  human  foresight  can  estimate  the  future,  be  feeble 
indeed,  for  the  Catholic  body,  numbering  twenty-five  out  ot  sev- 
enty-five millions,  will  be  too  respectable  a  minority  to  be  easily 

When  we  consider  that  Congregationalism  was  once  not  only 
the  dominant,  but  actually  the  State  Church  in  all  parts  of  New 
England  except  Rhode  Island,  the  refuge  of  the  Baptists,  the  status 
of  Congregationalism,  as  shown  by  the  census  of  1880,  is  perfectly 
amazing,  in  the  decline  which  it  shows.  In  Massachusetts,  its  very 
heart  and  centre,  the  descendants  of  the  Separatists  and  Puritans 
have  so  fallen  away  from  the  faith  and  church  of  their  ancestors, 
that  only  91,787,  or  5  per  cent,  of  a  population  of  1,783,012  were 
members  of  the  Congregational  Church.  In  Connecticut,  where 
Yale  College  did  so  much  to  save  them,  there  were,  indeed,  55,852, 
or  9  per  cent,  of  the  whole  population  ;  New  Hampshire  Congrega- 
tional churches  could  boast  of  20,547  members,  being  6  per  cent, 
of  the  population,  and  Vermont  20,1 17,  being  the  same  proportion. 
In  Maine,  so  long  an  appendage  of  Massachusetts,  there  were 
21,645  members  of  Congregational  churches,  barely  3^  percent, 
while  the  Methodists  had  25,883  members,  and  the  Baptists  21, 
165.  The  decline  in  Rhode  Island  amongst  its  dominant  denomi- 
nation was  as  marked,  for,  in  a  population  of  276,528,  the  Baptist 
churches  had  only  10,839  members,  about  4  per  cent,  of  the  popu- 

The  evidence  is  unmistakable  that  the  young  people  growing  up 
do  not  and  will  not  become  members  of  the  Protestant  churches. 

In  other  words,  allowing  for  those  under  twelve  years  of  age,  at 
least  75  out  of  every  100  no  longer  regard  the  ordinances  of  the 
Congregational  church  as  at  all  necessary  means  to  aid  them  to 
save  their  souls.  To  the  question  :  "  What  shall  I  do  to  be  saved  ?" 
they  will  not  take  as  an  answer:  '*  Become  church-members." 

Progress  and  Significance  of  the  Parnell  Coimnission.     103 


THE  Parnell  Commission  may  be  taken  as  a  test  and  illustra- 
tion of  the  condition  of  Ireland.  It  is  the  encysted  ganglion 
of  the  national  disease  at  present.  To  dissect  this  tumor  will  show 
the  method  of  the  malady. 

The  Commission,  though  still  current,  may  fairly  be  judged  by 
its  progress  from  its  first  meeting,  on  September  17th,  to  its  ad- 
journment for  a  month  on  December  20th.  In  this  time  the  Com- 
mission had  thirty-one  sittings.  A  review  of  the  proceedings  will 
compel  opinion  as  to  whether  or  not  the  London  limes  has  cleared 
itself  of  the  dreadful  suspicion  of  publishing  forged  letters  designed 
to  ruin  Mr.  Parnell,  and  also  whether  the  Tory  Government  is 
justified  in  using  the  Commission  to  parade  a  mass  of  alleged  Irish 
crime  and  "  outrage"  which  has  no  relation  to  Mr.  Parnell  or  the 
charges  of  the  Times  against  him. 

Early  in  July  last  a  libel  suit  was  decided  in  London  which  had 
been  brought  against  the  London  Times  by  a  man  named  Frank 
Hugh  O'Donnell,  a  writer  in  a  London  Tory  paper,  who  had  been 
a  Home  Rule  member  of  Parliament.  O'Donnell,  however,  had 
long  ago  earned  the  thorough  distrust  and  dislike  of  the  whole 
body  of  Irish  representatives,  and  had  been  rejected  as  one  of  their 

The  Times  had  at  this  time  adopted  a  system  of  making  offensive 
and  even  criminal  charges  against  members  of  the  Irish  party  in 
Parliament  and  daring  them  to  take  action  for  libel. 

A  year  and  a  half  ago  the  Times  published  a  letter  bearing  Mr. 
Parnell's  signature,  and  dated  May  15th,  1882,  addressed  to  Mr. 
Patrick  Egan,  showing  a  complicity  in  the  assassinations  by  "  the 
Invincibles,"  the  society  to  which  James  Carey,  the  informer,  be- 
longed, and  for  the  deeds  of  which  several  men  were  executed  in 
that  year.  This  letter  was  so  flagrant  a  forgery,  even  to  the  eye, 
but  more  so  to  the  common  sense,  that  it  fell  flat  even  in  England, 
and  produced  an  effect  directly  contrary  to  the  wish  and  purpose 
of  the  Times,  In  Ireland  and  America  it  was  universally  referred 
to  as  "  the  Times  forgery,"  and  was  received  with  ridicule. 

Mr.  Parnell  took  no  notice  of  the  slander,  nor  of  the  angry  chal- 
lenges of  the  Times  to  "  come  into  court  and  defend  yourself." 

It  was  not  understood  then  (to  any  but  the  Irish  members, 
probably)  that  the  Times  actually  relied  on  the  prejudices  or  dis- 

104  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

honesty  of  English  judges  and  jurors  to  come  off  without  a  pen- 
alty; but  the  formation  and  action  of  the  Special  Commission  now 
in  existence  establishes  a  startling  connivance  between  the  Govern- 
ment and  the  libelling  paper. 

When  Mr.  Parnell  and  his  associates  were  thus  leaving  the 
Times  alone,  and  winning  by  their  forbearance,  a  bogus  action  for 
libel  was  begun  against  the  Times  by  the  above-named  O'Donnell. 
In  this  action  O'Donnell  made  almost  no  pretence  of  supporting  a 
case;  he  went  just  far  enough  to  allow  the  counsel  for  the  Times 
(the  Attorney-General  of  England)  to  make  a  speech  of  injurious 
import  against  the  Nationalist  party,  renewing  all  the  Times'  libels, 
and  producing  in  court  a  heap  of  documents  used  to  prove  that 
the  Irish  National  League  was  an  association  for  the  manufacture 
of  outrage  and  crime,  that  it  had  instigated  the  Phoenix  Park  mur- 
ders, and  that  Mr.  Parnell  was  cognizant  of  its  evil  doings. 

Among  these  papers  was  a  letter  alleged  to  be  in  Mr.  Parnell's 
handwriting,  and  to  have  been  smuggled  from  Kilmainham  jail, 
addressed  to  Patrick  Egan,  saying  : 

"  What  are  these  fellows  waiting  for?  Inaction  is  inexpedient.  Our  best  men  are 
in  prison.    Nothing  has  been  done.    End  this  hesitancy.    Make  it  hot  for  old  Forster." 

Other  letters  were  produced  tending  to  show  that  Mr.  Parnell 
had  assisted  Mr.  Byrne,  an  alleged  Invincible,  to  escape,  and  that 
he  had  maintained  communication  with  and  received  money  from 
Mr.  Egan  and  others,  who  were  alleged  to  be  criminals. 

On  the  conclusion  of  the  Attorney-General's  speech,  the  Lord 
Chief-Justice  charged  strongly,  against  O'Donnell,  of  course,  and 
a  verdict  was  given  for  the  Times.  Thereupon  a  still  louder  out- 
cry arose — this  time  from  other  Tory  papers  besides  the  Times — 
to  Mr.  Parnell  to  "come  into  court"  and  defend  his  character. 

Mr.  Parnell,  on  the  day  following,  arose  in  Parliament  and 
denounced  as  absolute  forgeries  the  letters  with  his  signature 
published  in  the  Times  and  read  in  court  by  the  Attorney-Gen- 
eral. The  letter  dated  May  15,  1882,  had  his  signature  in  a  form 
he  had  not  attached  to  a  letter  since  1879,  when  he  had  adopted, 
for  special  reasons,  a  different  style.  "  The  great  majority  of  the 
letters  read  at  the  trial,"  Mr.  Parnell  continued,  "  are  palpable  for- 
geries. If  they  are  credited  it  must  be  supposed  that  I  deliber- 
ately put  myself  in  the  power  of  a  murderer;  that  I  was  accessory 
to  the  Phoenix  Park  murders  before  and  after  the  fact,  and  that  I 
entered  Kilmainham  jail  desiring  to  assassinate  Mr.  Forster.  The 
absurdity  of  the  whole  series  of  letters,  with  a  {qsn  exceptions, 
shows  them  to  be  forgeries." 

Mr.  Egan  cabled  from  America  that  the  letters  were  forgeries, 
and  offered  to  go  to  England  and  prove  it  if  he  were  promised 

Progress  and  Significance  of  the  Parnell  Commission.     105 

Still  the  Times  cried  out  that  Mr.  Parnell  was  bound  to  "  come 
into  court."  But  other  great  English  papers  accepted  the  Irish 
leader's  dignified  word  as  conclusive  proof  that  he  had  been  foully 
slandered.  The  Daily  News  summed  up  a  powerful  leader  with 
these  words : 

"  Mr.  Parnell's  plain  and  frank  words  effectually  dispose  of  the  absurd  charges  made 
against  him  by  dupes  and  partisans.  He  has  done  his  duty  by  exploding  before  the 
House  of  Commons  and  the  country  fictions  which  would  scarcely  have  deceived  a 
well-regulated  nursery." 

And  then  the  tide  turned  for  a  time,  and  set  in  favor  of  the 
Home  Rulers,  the  first  wave  splashing  dismay  in  the  faces  oi  Times 
and  Tories. 

This  first  wave  was  a  question  by  Sir  Frederick  Lawson,  an  Eng- 
lish Home  Ruler,  asking  whether  or  not  the  Government  would 
appoint  a  Committee  of  the  House  of  Commons  to  inquire  into  the 
charges  made  against  the  Irish  Nationalist  members.  Mr.  Parnell 
followed  with  a  direct  motion  for  the  appointment  of  such  a  Com- 
mittee, and  asked  the  Government  to  appoint  a  day  to  discuss  the 
subject  and  give  him  an  opportunity  "  to  repel  the  foul  and  un- 
founded charges  made  against  him  by  Attorney- General  Webster 
in  the  trial  of  the  suit  of  Mr.  O'Donnell  against  the  Times." 

In  reply,  the  Government,  through  its  leader,  Mr.  W.  H.  Smith, 
declined  to  give  a  dav  for  the  discussion,  and  also  declined  to  ap- 
point a  Committee  of  Inquiry. 

This  action  of  the  Government  created  a  strong  feeling  in  favor 
of  Mr.  Parnell ;  and  the  Tory  Government  rapidly  learned  that  a 
step  had  been  taken  that  must  be  recalled.  Accordingly,  a  few  days 
later,  the  Government  leader,  Mr.  Smith,  introduced  a  motion  pro- 
posing, not  a  Parliamentary  inquiry,  which  would  be  at  least  open 
and  general,  but  a  Special  Commission,  to  be  composed  of  three 
judges — appointed  by  the  Government. 

Weeks  of  heated  discussion  followed  the  announcement,  which 
was  soon  backed  up  by  another  to  the  effect  that  the  three  judges 
were  to  have  power  to  inquire  into  all  kinds  of  crime  in  Ireland, 
whether  or  not  connected  with  the  Times'  charges  against  the  Irish 

The  judges  selected  by  the  Government,  Hannen,  Day  and 
Smith,  were  objectionable,  two  ^f  them  being  pronouncedly  anti- 
Irish,  one  of  the  two.  Justice  Day,  being  a  notorious  hater  of  the 
Irish  people  and  their  National  movement.  An  English  member, 
a  man  of  national  repute,  a  leading  London  journalist  (Labouchere), 
declared  that  Judge  Day  was  unfit  to  serve  on  the  Commission, 
"  because  in  a  recent  trial  of  three  Irishmen  for  assault,  held  in 
Liverpool,  Justice  Day  had  said  that  such  a  dastardly,  cowardly 
and  brutal  crime  could  not  have  happened  in  England,  except 
among  the  Irish."  « 

io6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

Mr.  Parnell,  moved  by  a  patriotic  spirit,  foreseeing  danger  to 
his  country,  urged  the  House  to  recollect  that  they  were  discuss- 
ing a  proposal  to  provide  a  substitute  for  the  jury.  "  While  in 
England  a  jury  of  twelve  was  always  provided,  it  was  proposed 
that  the  settlement  of  an  important,  far-reaching  Irish  issue  be  in- 
volved in  an  inquiry  to  depend  upon  the  verdict  of  two  men." 

An  eminent  English  member,  Mr.  John  Morley,  perhaps  the 
first  Liberal  in  the  country  in  influence,  after  Mr.  Gladstone,  cre- 
ated a  sensation  by  saying  that  "a  gentleman  having  peculiar 
means  of  knowing  Justice  Day's  mind  upon  Irish  affairs"  had 
written  informing  him  that  he  (Justice  Day)  was  "  like  Torque- 
mada,  a  Tory  of  the  high-flyer,  non-juror  type;  that  he  nightly 
railed  against  Mr.  Parnell  and  his  friends;  that  he  regarded  them 
as  infidels  and  rebels ;  that  he  believed  them  guilty  of  any  crime." 
There  were  loud  cries  of  "name!"  and  Mr.  Morley  named 
his  informant — an  eminent  colleague  of  Justice  Day's  on  the  Bel- 
fast Riot  Commission.  "  Surely,"  concluded  Mr.  Morley,  "in  the 
face  of  a  feeling  of  this  kind  toward  Justice  Day,  the  Government 
will  not  retain  him  on  the  Commission,  against  which  there  ought 
to  be  no  whisper  raised." 

Mr.  Parnell  earnestly  urged  that  the  Government  could  no 
longer  plead  ignorance  in  regard  to  a  Commission  composed  of 
two  Conservatives  and  one  Unionist.  "  The  world  would  know 
to-morrow,"  he  said,  "  that  the  Government's  idea  of  fairness  was 
that  the  Nationalists  should  be  tried  by  a  jury  of  three  English 
political  opponents." 

But  the  Government  had  picked  their  men,  and  meant  to  stick 
to  them,  for  their  own  purposes  ;  and  as  they  had  the  votes,  these 
three  judges  were  appointed  as  the  Special  Commission. 

Then  followed  a  hopeless  fight,  joined  in  by  English  Liberals 
side  by  side  with  Irish  Home  Rulers,  to  compel  or  induce  the 
Government  to  limit  the  scope  of  the  inquiry  into  the  charges  of 
the  Times  and  its  alleged  Parnell  letters.  In  the  course  of  this 
discussion  occurred  the  now  historical  castigation  of  Joseph  Cham- 
berlain by  Parnell,  and  the  first  application  of  the  title  "Judas"  to 
Mr.  Chamberlain  by  T.  P.  O'Connor.  Mr.  Parnell's  scourge  was 
drawn  in  comment.on  some  suggestion  made  by  Chamberlain.  He 
said :  t 

"  My  recollection  of  Mr.  Chamberlain  is  that  before  he  was  a  Minister  he  was  always 
anxious  to  put  the  Irish  party  forward  to  do  the  work  which  he  himself  was  afraid  to 
do.  After  he  became  Minister  he  was  always  most  anxious  to  betray  to  the  Irish  party 
the  secrets  of  the  Cabinet,  and  to  endeavor  while  in  the  Cabinet  to  undermine  their 
councils  and  plans  in  the  interest  of  the  Irish  party.  If  the  inquiry  be  extended  to 
these  matters  I  shall  be  able  to  make  good  my  words  by  documentary  and  other  evi- 
dence— that  has  not  been  forged." 

Progress  and  Significance  of  the  Parnell  Commission.     107 

The  ensuing  discussion,  to  limit  the  scope  of  the  inquiry  to 
direct  charges,  is  of  much  importance,  as  it  shows  what  the  result 
was  intended  by  the  Government  to  be,  and  illumines  the  purpose 
of  the  Commission  in  hearing  all  kinds  of  evidence  retailing  stories 
of  crime  or  conspiracy  in  Ireland. 

Mr;  Sexton,  pungent  as  usual,  directly  charged  that  the  Gov- 
ernment leader,  Mr.  Smith,  was  in  league  with  the  Titnes'  editor, 
Mr.  Walter,  and  that  the  funds  and  machinery  of  the  national 
treasury  were  at  the  disposal  of  the  Times.     Mr.  Sexton  said: 

"  Walter  at  first  did  not  wish  that  other  persons  should  be  included  in  the  investi- 
gation, but  when  he  visited  Mr.  Smith  he  knew  that  the  letters  he  had  published  in 
the  Times  would  be  proved  to  be  forgeries,  that  his  charges  against  members  would 
break  down,  and  that  the  only  chance  he  had  of  escaping  disgrace  and  the  ruin  of  the 
Times  was  to  get  a  roving  inquiry  into  the  conduct  of  persons  over  whom  members 
had  no  control,  and  thus  mislead  the  public  mind." 

This  clear  opinion  was  an  actual  foresight  of  what  is  likely  to 
happen  and  has  already  happened.  The  Government,  confident 
of  its  majority,  made  little  show  of  defending  its  motive  or  intent, 
but  sullenly  sat  and  waited  for  the  vote,  taking  the  scorn  and  argu- 
ment of  Liberals  and  Home  Rulers  with  the  same  stolid  indiffer- 
ence. They  refused,  by  a  party  vote,  to  have  the  Parnell  letters 
specially  inquired  into.  The  motion  had  been  made  by  an  Eng- 
lish member.  "  It  now  appears,"  said  the  caustic  Sir  Wm.  Vernon 
Harcourt,  ex-Home  Secretary,  "  that  the  Government's  object  in 
creating  the  Commission  was  not  to  give  the  Irish  members  an  op- 
portunity to  clear  themselves  of  foul  and  calumnious  charges,  but 
to  inquire  into  a  political  organization — not  to  clear,  but  to  blacken, 
the  characters  of  the  Nationalists." 

But  the  Government  had  its  purpose  settled ;  the  closure  was 
applied  to  stop  further  suggestion  or  exposure ;  the  Irish  mem- 
bers walked  out  of  the  House  in  a  body — and  the  bill  was  passed. 

Then  Mr.  Parnell  entered  suit  in  the  Scottish  Courts  against 
the  London  Times,  claiming  ^50,000  damages  on  account  of  the 
forged  letters.  The  Times,  frightened  at  the  first  show  of  retalia- 
tion, tried  to  evade  the  legal  test,  after  all  its  loud  challenges  to 
"come  into  court,"  and  urged  that  the  Scottish  Courts  had  no 
jurisdiction.  This  was  overruled,  and  the  trial  is  proceeding  in 
Scotland  by  law  at  the  same  time  that  it  progresses  in  England 
by  the  arbitrary  will  of  three  partisan  judges. 

The  first  result  of  the  Commission  was  a  national  and  interna- 
tional movement  to  raise  money  for  the  defence  of  Mr.  Parnell. 
It  was  recognized  at  once  that  the  Commission  would  involve 
him  in  enormous  expenses,  and  that  both  his  fortune  and  good 
name  were  at  stake.     Mr.  Gladstone  was  one  of  the  first  to  point 

io8  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

this  out  to  Englishmen.     In  a  speech  at  Burslem,  in  August  last, 
he  said : 

"  The  charges  against  Mr,  Parnell  would,  if  proved,  destroy  everything  he  valued — 
political  power  and  position.  But  he  is  going  to  be  tried  on  vague  general  charges. 
I  will  never  believe  Mr.  Parnell  guilty  of  personal  dishonor.  The  inquiry  by  the 
Commission  may  last  for  years,  which  would  mean  pecuniary  ruin  for  Mr.  Parnell, 
while  the  expense  to  the  Times  would  be  a  mere  flea  bite.  Regarding  the  action 
brought  in  Edinburgh  by  Mr.  Parnell  against  the  Times,  Mr.  Parnell  will  be  certain  to 
get  justice.  If  the  letters  were  forged,  he  may  get  substantial  damages  ;  but  a  special 
clause  in  the  Commission  Bill  indemnifies  the  Times  if  the  charges  are  not  made  good. 
That  is  a  specimen  of  the  Government's  sense  of  equality." 

The  Parnell  Defence  Fund  was  simultaneously  opened  in  Eng- 
land, Ireland,  the  United  States,  Canada,  and  the  Australias. 

An  address,  issued  in  this  country  in  August,  1888,  by  Mr.  John 
Fitzgerald,  President  of  the  Irish  National  League  of  America, 
called  forth  an  excited  opposition  from  the  united  Tory  press  of 
England.  This  address,  in  terse  language,  stated  the  whole  case, 
dwelling  strongly  on  the  suit  in  the  Scottish  courts.  The  following 
extract  was  the  special  cause  of  the  Tory  protest,  though  it  was 
almost  a  repetition  of  the  expressions  of  eminent  English  Liberals 
in  Parliament : 

*'  Mr.  Parnell  seeks  from  a  Scottish  jury  the  justice  that  could  not  be  obtained  from 
the  British  Parliament  nor  from  London  law  courts  liable  to  the  interference  of  cor- 
rupt Government  officials.  Armed  with  unanswerable  evidence,  Mr.  Parnell  asks  a 
jury  of  honest  Scotchmen  to  convict  the  proprietors  of  the  Times  of  uttering  forged 
letters  and  of  attempting  by  such  criminal  means  to  destroy  the  reputations  of  honest 

"  To  prevent  tha<^  result  and  its  attendant  consequences,  the  coffers  of  the  London 
Times  will  be  supplemented  by  the  secret-service  money  at  the  disposal  of  the  Gov- 
ernment, and  no  means  that  can  safely  help  to  defeat  the  ends  of  justice  will  be  left 
untried  by  this  Cabinet,  so  experienced  in  all  the  darksome  ways  abhorrent  to  honest 
men.  In  such  a  critical  position  Mr.  Parnell  must  not  be  left  to  fight  unaided.  The 
Irish  race  must  not  permit  their  leader  to  fail  in  his  efforts  to  secure  a  fair  hearing  of 
his  cause  for  mere  want  of  funds  to  carry  on  what  must  be  an  expensive  suit.  It  is 
our  cause  he  is  fighting.  It  is  we  who  through  him  are  assailed  by  this  combination 
of  perjurers  and  forgers,  and  it  is  incumbent  upon  us  to  stand  loyally  by  him  and  give 
him  that  financial  support  which  the  circumstances  may  demand.  A  Parnell  defense 
fund  should  be  inaugurated  in  every  State  without  delay." 

The  Parnell  Commission,  as  it  is  universally  called,  opened  its 
first  session  in  London  on  September  17th,  1888.  The  court  in 
which  the  sittings  are  held  (the  Probate  Court)  is  a  very  limited 
room,  and  the  crowding  at  first  was  excessive,  over  200  reporters, 
representing  English,  Irish  and  American  papers,  being  present. 

Sir  Charles  Russell,  Q.C.,  M.P,,  and  Mr.  Herbert  H.  Asquith, 
M.P.  for  the  east  division  of  Fife,  were  the  first  counsel  for  the 
Irish  side.  Before  opening  the  regular  proceedings  Justice  Han- 
nen  asked  Sir  Charles  Russell  for  whom  he  appeared. 

Progress  and  Significance  of  the  Parnell  Commission.      109 

"  I  represent  eighty-four  Irish  Members  of  Parliament,"  was  the 
reply.    Several  other  lawyers  of  distinction  have  since  been  added. 

The  counsel  for  the  Times  were  the  Attorney-General  (Sir  Rich- 
ard Webster),  Sir  Henry  James,  Q.C.,  and  Mr.  W.  Graham,  with 
Mr.  John  Atkinson,  Q.C.,  and  Mr.  Ronan,  of  the  Irish  bar. 

The  case  opened  with  a  demand  by  Mr.  Parnell's  counsel  for  the 
production  of  the  originals  of  the  letters  published  by  the  Times, 
The  judges  evaded  this  first  appeal  to  their  justice,  .saying  that  it 
was  understood  *'  that  the  7z;;/^5  would  produce  all  the  letters  and 
documents  affecting  Mr,  Parnell  and  the  others  against  whom  it 
brought  charges ;"  but  adding  this  saving  clause  for  the  Times: 
"  But  if  the  parties  cannot  agree  as  to  the  production  of  the  papers, 
the  judges  will  deal  with  the  disputed  points  in  chambers  after- 
wards.'' Of  course  the  Times'  lawyers  could  not  agree ;  but  the 
counsel  for  Mr.  Parnell  stopped  proceedings  by  insisting  that  this 
question  be  at  once  decided.  The  judges  retired  to  deliberate,  and 
returned  with  the  decision  that  they  should  order  the  production 
of  the  letters  demanded  by  the  counsel  for  Mr.  Parnell. 

"  The  result  so  far,"  wrote  a  member  of  Parliament  who  was 
present,  *'  is  satisfactory  to  the  Irish  party.  The  judges  seem  to 
realize  that  they  are  standing  in  the  glare  of  a  fierce  light,  with  the 
eyes  of  the  whole  world  upon  them.  They  are  judging  a  case  as 
important  as  the  impeachment  of  Warren  Hastings  or  the  trial  of 
Charles  I.  No  matter  what  their  personal  predilections  or  politics 
may  be,  they  see  the  necessity  for  caution  and  impartiality.  That 
gives  great  strength  to  the  Irish  cause." 

This  sanguine  observer  has  since  had  reason  to  change  his 
opinion.  From  the  opening  day,  with  one  or  two  exceptions,  the 
judges  have  steadily  ruled  against  the  Irish  side  and  in  favor  of 
the  Times.  One  of  these  exceptions  was,  however,  very  important. 
Late  in  October  the  judges  ordered  the  Times  to  produce  certain 
forged  letters  supplied  by  their  agent  in  America,  Roberts,  which 
even  the  Times  had  discovered  to  be  forgeries. 

Before  the  sessions  were  two  weeks  old  public  patience  was  ex- 
hausted, and  the  tactics  of  the  Tiines  and  the  commissioners  were 
generally  understood.  The  court  was  no  longer  crowded.  The 
Attorney- General  made  an  interminable  opening  speech  of  many 
days'  delivery,  in  which  he  rehashed  the  old  stories  and  charges 
of  the  O'Donnell  trial,  going  out  of  his  way  at  every  sentence  to 
extend  the  unsupported  slanders  and  embrace  new  names  in  his 
charges.  He  outlined  a  scheme  of  taking  Ireland,  county  by 
county,  and  presenting  every  breach  of  the  peace  and  every  alleged 
*'  outrage  "  for  eight  years  past,  without  making  any  attempt  to 
prove  their  connection  with  the  National  League,  much  less  the 
responsibility  of  the  Irish  leaders.     He  concluded  his  monstrous 

no  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

speech  by  stating  that  men  who  had  actually  participated  in  out- 
rages would  be  called  as  witnesses,  and  they  would  tell  what  moneys 
had  been  paid  to  them,  and  how  the  crimes  they  were  hired  to 
commit  had  been  arranged. 

From  the  address  of  the  Attorney-General  it  was  at  last  learned 
that  the  Times'  case  against  Mr.  Parnell  is  that  in  1879  he  became 
an  ally  of  Michael  Davitt  in  founding  the  Land  League,  a  con- 
spiracy which  aimed  at  uniting  the  farmers  of  Ireland  in  a  strike 
against  rent,  and  ultimately  at  the  separation  of  Ireland  from  Eng- 
land ;  that  in  the  promotion  of  the  objects  of  the  League  Mr.  Par- 
nell and  Mr.  Davitt  made  use  of  the  moonlighter,  the  dynamitard 
and  the  assassin.  And  in  support  of  this  contention  the  Times 
put  in  evidence  letters  of  Mr.  Parnell  justifying  the  Phoenix  Park 
murders ;  letters  and  articles  which  have  appeared  in  America  ad- 
vocating the  use  of  dynamite  ;  and  speeches  made  in  Ireland  and  in 
America,  which  incited  to  the  committal  of  outrages  and  murders, 
and  brought  them  about. 

It  was  hoped  that  the  inquiry  would  at  least  become  interesting 
when  the  witnesses  came  up  for  examination  ;  but  even  this  was  a 
disappointment.  The  Times  presented  witness  after  witness  of  the 
same  indescribable  **  informer"  kind,  varied  by  the  testimony  of 
Irish  constabulary  inspectors,  and  of  persons  who  had  suffered 
from  any  agrarian  or  other  association  or  from  personal  vengeance. 

The  informers'  evidence  was  easily  riddled  by  cross-examination. 
They  broke  down  almost  without  exception.  Not  a  scintilla  of 
evidence  worth  hearing  has  yet  been  produced  to  connect  the  Na- 
tionalist members  with  the  alleged  outrages,  though  this  was  the 
special  province  of  the  informers. 

Of  course  there  were  many  dramatic  scenes  and  memorable  mo- 
ments. Late  in  November  a  zealous  police  inspector  from  Ireland 
was  asked  on  cross-examination  **  how  long  he  had  been  engaged 
in  getting  up  a  case  for  the  Times  f  The  Times'  counsel  objected, 
whereupon  Sir  Charles  Russell  exclaimed :  "  We  charge  and  in- 
tend to  prove  that  the  whole  executive  authority  in  Ireland,  even 
including  the  resident  magistrates,  is  engaged  in  getting  up  the 
Times'  case." 

The  witnesses  for  the  Times,  up  to  the  day  of  adjournment  in 
December,  were,  in  the  main,  men  whose  testimony  was  as  ques- 
tionable as  their  characters.  Never  since  Falstaff's  ragged  com- 
pany has  such  a  crew  been  gathered  for  imperial  service.  A  few 
examples  are  worth  giving : 

Early  in  November,  in  a  London  tavern  opposite  the  law  courts, 
two  men  quarrelled,  and  one  tried  to  murder  the  other  by  shooting 
him  with  a  revolver.  The  would-be  murderer  was  arrested,  and 
was  found  to  be  a  chief  witness  for  the  Times,  d^  farrier  from  Tralee, 

Progress  and  Significance  of  the  Parnell  Commission.     1 1 1 

"  a  dirty,  repulsive-looking  fellow,"  says  the  English  report,  named 
Joseph  Kavanagh.  The  other  man  was  Patrick  Lane,  an 'intense 
Irishman,  who  keeps  a  shoemaker's  shop  in  London,  but  who  was 
playing  the  part  of  a  perjurer,  receiving  money  and  instructions 
from  the  limes'  counsel,  and  giving  information  of  his  discoveries 
to  friends  of  the  Irish  members.  Lane  and  Kavanagh  had  met, 
and  Kavanagh  had  confided  to  Lane,  whom  he  regarded  as  a  fellow- 
informer,  that  he  was  going  to  swear  that  Irish  leaders  had  paid 
him  money  to  commit  outrages;  that  the  Times'  solicitor  gave  him 
all  the  money  he  wanted,  paid  for  his  board  and  lodging,  and  paid 
him  £6  a  week  for  pocket  money.  (The  accuracy  of  these  stories 
has  been  fully  verified  by  the  Irish  counsel.)  At  last  Kavanagh 
discovered  that  Lane  was  not  an  informer  to  be  trusted,  a  quarrel 
ensued,  and  the  real  informer  and  outrage-monger,  armed,  of  course, 
drew  his  revolver  and  attempted  to  murder  the  man  who  knew 
him  to  be  a  hired  perjurer. 

This  affair  throws  a  lurid  light  on  the  quality  of  the  Times'  evi- 
dence. When  Kavanagh  was  arrested  he  defied  the  authorities, 
and  boasted  that  the  limes  ^ovXdi  look  after  him.  His  boast  came 
true,  for  next  day,  when  he  was  arraigned,  Solicitor  Langham  an- 
nounced that  he  had  been  instructed  by  the  Times  to  defend  the 
prisoner.  Lane,  on  oath,  told  the  whole  story,  gloried  in  the  prac- 
tical joke  he  had  played  on  the  Times,  because,  as  he  said,  their 
solicitor,  Soames,  was  sending  his  agents  out  to  suborn  evidence  de- 
signed to  damn  and  blacken  the  character  of  honest  men ;  "  but," 
added  Lane,  doing  his  best  to  add  an  inch  or  two  to  his  low  stature, 
"  he  won't  manufacture  this  Paddy  into  an  informer." 

The  court  laughed,  and  the  laugh  became  a  prolonged  roar,  when, 
in  extenuation  of  the  fact  that  he  had  bobbed  his  head  very  low 
when  Kavanagh  fired,  he  laid  down  this  deliciously  Hibernian 
aphorism  :  '*  It  is  better  to  be  a  coward  five  minutes  than  to  be 
dead  all  your  lifetime."  The  utmost  ingenuity  of  the  Times'  solici- 
tor failed  to  shake  the  evidence  of  Lane  and  his  witnesses,  and  the 
prisoner  Kavanagh  was  remanded.  It  is  not  likely  that  he  will 
be  punished  for  his  crime ;  but  the  Times  evidently  has  lost  a 
valuable  witness. 

In  the  first  week  of  December  the  Times  produced  a  ready  witness 
named  Walsh,  who  swore  that,  while  he  was  assistant  secretary  of 
the  National  League,  he  manufactured  outrages  at  the  request  of 
the  local  leaders  of  the  League.  On  cross-examination  even  the 
judges  were  surprised  when  Walsh. confessed  himself  a  burglar  and 
a  forger,  and  that  he  had  only  consented  to  give  evidence  for  the 
Times  when  the  police  threatened  prosecution  for  forgery. 

An  attempt  was  made  to  create  a  sensation  over  the  testi- 
mony as  to  Lord  Mountmorres'  murder,  his  widow  appearing  m 

112  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

court  in  deep  mourning.  An  informer  named  Burke,  however, 
told  too  much.  He  said  that  about  fourteen  years  ago  he  took  a 
secret  oath  in  England.  He  returned  to  Ireland,  and  with  some 
of  his  fellows  planned  the  death  of  Lord  Mountmorres.  He  told 
the  names  of  the  men  who  were  guilty,  and  he  ascribed  their  orders 
to  the  Land  League.  In  reply  to  Sir  Charles  Russell  he  confessed 
himself  utterly  unable  to  explain  anything  with  regard  to  the  secret 
oath,  to  the  estabUshment  of  the  Land  League,  or  to  the  manner  of 
Mountmorres'  death. 

Another  hoax  in  which  the  Times  was  the  victim  was  the  case 
of  Patrick  Molloy,  of  Dublin,  who  became  their  paid  agent.  One 
of  the  Invincibles  of  1882  was  named  Molloy,  and  the  Tunes  was 
led  to  believe  that  a  young  man  of  that  name  in  Dublin  was  the 
same  person.  They  approached  him,  and  they  met  their  match  ; 
he  led  on  the  Tunes  folk  so  that  he  got  all  sorts  of  promises,  and 
when  he  finally  declined  to  go  to  London  the  judges  had  him 
arrested  and  brought  into  court.  There  the  whole  hoax  was  dis- 
closed, and,  to  add  to  the  discomfiture  of  the  Times  and  its  parti- 
sans on  the  bench.  Sir  Charles  Russell  succeeded  in  preventing  the 
Times  from  wriggling  out  of  the  matter. 

When  Molloy  was  called  for  the  limes  he  had  no  evidence  to 
give;  but,  on  cross-examination  by  Michael  Davitt,  he  stated  that 
a  solicitor's  clerk  in  Dublin  had  promised  him  money  if  he  would 
try  to  criminate  Mr.  Davitt  either  by  true  or  false  evidence. 

Other  witnesses  were  called,  who  swore  that  they  knew  of  cases 
of  boycotting  and  outrage.  On  being  cross-examined  they  all 
testified  that  they  knew  of  persons  who  had  "  written  threatening 
lettersto  themselves,"  their  object  being  to  excite  sympathy.  The 
League,  they  said,  denounced  outrages,  and  was  mainly  instru- 
mental in  securing  reductions  in  rent,  which  were  very  properly 
requested  after  the  bad  seasons  of  1878  and  1879.  These  witnesses 
said  it  was  their  belief  that  if  the  reductions  had  been  voluntarily 
granted  the  country  would  have  remained  peaceful. 

The  last  two  witnesses  for  the  limes^  examined  on  the  eve  and 
the  day  of  adjourning  the  court  till  the  15th  of  January,  turned 
out  to  be  interesting  specimens  of  the  informer  class,  so  that  the 
Commission  adjourned  with  an  unfavorable  outlook  for  the  Times. 

The  first  of  these  witnesses  was  a  young  man,  evidently  newly- 
clad,  who  gave  his  name  as  James  Buckley,  a  laborer  from  Cause- 
way, Tralee,  formerly  of  the  Kerry  militia,  transferred  to  the  Middle- 
boro  regiment,  from  which  he  had  been  discharged,  with  a  character 
which  he  swore  was  good,  but  which  he  had  once  destroyed.  He 
testified  to  the  Times'  counsel  that  he  had  been  sworn  into  the  Fenian 
Brotherhood  in  1880,  and  that  all  his  brother  Fenians  belonged  to 
the   Land   League.     He  told  a  queer  story  about  a  friend  of  his, 

Progress  and  Significance  of  the  Parnell  Commission,     113 

named  Roche,  who  had  been  expelled  from  the  League,  and  who 
had  become  a  police  spy,  Buckley  was  one  of  two  or  three 
selected  to  kill  Roche,  whom  he  met  soon  after,  at  seven  o'clock 
of  a  summer  evening,  a  few  hundred  yards  from  the  police  bar- 
racks. He  swore  that  he  fired  a  revolver  four  times  at  Roche,  but 
it  missed  fire.  Three  times  he  had  fired  while  he  held  Roche  by 
the  coat.  After  this  very  palpable  "  outrage,"  Roche  said  to  him 
in  a  friendly  way  :  "  Come  over  to  the  river  till  I  put  a  bush  in  the 
gap."  Roche  afterward  shouted  "  murder!  "  and  went  and  gave 
information,  and  Buckley  was  arrested  ;  but  he  had  two  men  ready 
to  swear  an  alibi  ;  and,  as  he  and  Roche  were  at  this  time  giving 
secret  information  to  the  police,  the  charge  was  not  pressed  and  he 
was  released,  to  become  a  close  friend  of  Roche  again.  Though 
he  was  charged  with  attempted  murder,  he  was  released  without 
trial  or  bail.  On  cross-examination  this  precious  witness  con- 
fessed that  his  character  for  veracity  was  bad,  that  he  had  been 
discharged  from  the  militia  with  a  character  which  he  had  destroyed, 
that  he  had  been  convicted  at  petty  sessions  in  Ireland  "  four  or 
five  times,"  that  he  had  broken  open  his  mother's  box  and  robbed 
her,  and  that  his  mother  was  now  in  the  Listowel  workhouse. 

The  last  witness  cross-examined  before  adjournment  was  an  in- 
former, named  O'Connor,  from  Castleisland.  This  witness  had 
told  a  strong  and  straight  story  for  the  Times,  bearing  hard  on  Mr. 
Timothy  Harrington,  M.P.,  who,  he  swore,  had  employed  him  and 
others  in  1880  to  go  around  by  night  and  threaten  voters  to  vote 
for  the  Nationalist  candidate.  On  cross-examination,  this  witness 
confessed  that  he  had  been  in  the  pay  of  the  police  since  1866,  and 
that  he  had  made  a  statement  to  a  Government  agent  in  Dublin, 
named  Walker,  **  who  pressed  him  rather  hard,  and  asked  him 
about  Mr.  Harrington."  At  this  period  of  the  cross-examination 
Sir  Charles  Russell  handed  the  informer  a  letter,  and  asked  him 
it  he  had  written  it.  The  color  left  the  man's  face  as  he  looked  at 
the  letter,  and  in  a  low  voice  he  admitted  that  it  was  his  writing, 
addressed  to  his  brother  in  Ireland.  Sir  Charles  Russell  then  read 
the  letter,  as  follows  : 

London,  3d  December,  1888. 
Dear  Pat.  :  I  am  here  in  London  since  yesterday  morning.  I  was  in  Dublin  for 
two  days.  I  got  myself  summoned  for  the  Times.  I  thought  I  could  make  a  few 
pounds  in  the  transaction,  but  I  find  I  cannot  unless  I  would  sware  quare  things.  I 
am  afraid  they  will  send  me  to  jail  or  at  least  give  me  nothing  to  carry  me  home.  I 
would  not  bother  with  it  at  all,  but  my  health  was  very  bad  when  I  was  at  home,  and 
I  thought  I  would  take  a  short  voyage  and  see  a  doctor  at  their  expense  (laughter), 
but  instead  of  that  doing  me  any  good  it  has  made  me  worse  a  little.  Twill  be  ex- 
amined to-morrow,  Tuesday,  the  4th.  Get  some  daily  paper,  the  Freeman,  and  see 
how  it  will  be  on  it.  You  need  not  mind  replying  to  this,  as  I  will  leave  this  house  as 
soon  as  I  am  examined,  which  won't  be  longer  than  to-morrow,  Tuesday.  Whatever 
way  it  will  end  do  not  blame  me  for  it.  I  thought  to  do  some  good,  but  I  fear  I  can- 
VOL.  XIV. — 8 

114  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

not,  but  harm.  Tell  Martin  to  have  thirty  shillings  out  of  the  bank,  as  I  fear  I  will 
have  to  send  for  the  cost  if  he  has  get  it.  After  the  fair  I  may  not  need  it,  but  I  am 
afraid  I  may.  I  will  write  again  to-morrow  night,  or  at  furthest  on  Wednesday,  if  I 
am  alive  and  at  liberty. 

Your  unfortunate  brother, 

Thomas  O'Connor. 

This  was  the  last  word  of  testimony  heard  by  the  Parnell  Com- 
mission before  its  adjournment  in  December,  and  it  is  typical.  It 
shows  the  straits  in  which  are  the  Government  and  the  Times  to 
connect  the  Irish  leaders  with  the  commission  of  outrage.  A  case 
that  relies  on  such  means  is  necessarily  a  weak  and  failing  case; 
and  though  the  inquiry  is  not  yet  over,  from  the  past  we  may 
prejudge  the  future.  Were  there  stronger  witnesses  to  come  here- 
after, the  Times  would  not  have  risked  its  case  by  using  creatures 
like  these  in  the  early  stages  of  the  trial. 

It  will  be  said  that  these  are  only  the  weaker  links  of  the  chain, 
and  this  is  true.  But  they  are  the  only  links  presented  to  connect 
the  Nationalists  with  the  commission  of  crime.  The  stronger  links 
are  cases  of  utterly  disassociated  outrage,  of  agrarian  and  White- 
boy  and  personal  offences,  against  which  the  National  leaders  have 
always  warned  the  people. 

During  all  the  time  of  the  trial,  the  coercion  rule  in  Ireland  has 
been  applied  with  redoubled  rigor.  Hal f-a  score  members  of  Par- 
liament are  either  in  prison  or  about  to  be  tried  for  nominal  breaches 
of  the  Coercion  Law.  On  Christmas  Eve,  Mr.  James  J.  O'Kelly,  M.P., 
was  released,  after  three  months'  imprisonment,  and  a  week  later 
Mr.  Timothy  Harrington,  M.P.,  editor  of  the  Kerry  Sentinel,  was 
sentenced  to  six  months'  imprisonment, "  with  hard  labor,"  which 
specially  condemns  him  to  the  performance  of  degrading  offices,  in 
association  with  criminal  prisoners.  On  January  4th,  this  year,  Mr. 
Finucane,  M.P.,  was  sentenced  to  a  month's  imprisonment ;  he  was 
escorted  to  Castleconnell  jail  by  the  mayor  and  crowds  of  cheering 
people.  William  O'Brien,  M.P.,  editor  of  United  Ireland,  was  ordered 
to  appear  before  the  Parnell  Commission  on  the  15th  of  January  to 
receive  sentence,  for  writing  of  the  Times  as  the  *'  Forger."  To 
this  summons  Mr.  O'Brien  has  replied  in  his  paper : 

"  For  speaking  the  truth  fearlessly  we  have  no  contrition,  but  if  the  Attorney-Gen- 
eral can  suggest  a  line  in  our  leader  in  which  we  have  diverted  from  the  strictest  accu- 
racy, we  will  tender  an  ample  apology.  Perhaps  his  sensitive  soul  was  stirred  by  our 
allusion  to  his  client  as  the  '  Forger.'  He  really  must  make  allowance  for  Press 
exigencies.  We  have  used  the  name  since  the  *  alleged /acj2;«/7^ letters  '  first  appeared, 
and  we  will  cease  to  use  it  only  when  they  are  proved  genuine.  If  anything  is  likely 
to  act  as  a  deterrent  on  the  '  Forger's '  witnesses  it  is  not  our  humble  articles,  but  the 
scorching  cross-examination  of  Sir  Charles  Russell.  Why  don't  they  attach  him 
for  contempt  ?  " 

Progress  and  Significance  of  the  Parnell  Commission.     1 1 5 

On  the  opening  of  the  Commission  on  January  15th,  Mr.  O'Brien 
appeared  in  his  own  defence,  and  received  only  a  warning  for  the 

On  January  24th,  Mr.  Wm.  O'Brien  appeared  for  trial  on  a 
charge  of  conspiracy,  at  Carrick-on-Suir,  County  Tipperary.  The 
Government  had  issued  a  proclamation  forbidding  a  demonstra- 
tion ;  but  20,000  persons  assembled  to  welcome  Mr.  O'Brien  with 
cheers.  The  constabulary  were  ordered  to  charge  the  crowd, 
which  they  did  with  bayonets  and  clubs,  wounding  a  great  many. 
Mr.  O'Brien  was  struck  with  a  police  rifle-stock,  and  Mr.  T.  M. 
Healy,  M.  P.,  was  threatened  with  a  bayonet  at  his  breast. 

Mr.  O'Brien  is  also  under  summons  to  appear  for  trial  at  Kil- 
larney  on  January  29th,  on  the  charge  of  inducing  tenants  not  to 
pay  rents.  Still  another  summons  has  been  served  on  him,  to  ap- 
pear for  trial  at  Rathmore,  on  February  14th,  on  a  similar  charge. 
So  that  it  will  go  hard  with  the  three  English  judges  and  the  sti- 
pendiary magistrates  of  Ireland,  if  they  are  not  able  to  lock  up  for 
at  least  six  months  this  outspoken  and  courageous  editor  and 
Member  of  Parliament. 

Besides  these  charges  and  trials,  other  Irish  members  of  Parlia- 
ment have  the  cloud  of  the  prison  hanging  over  their  heads.  Mr. 
J.  D.  Sheahan,  M.  P.,  has  been  tried,  but  not  sentenced,  on  account 
of  ill  health ;  and  summonses  and  warrants  have  been  issued  for 
the  following  gentlemen  since  the  first  of  January :  Denis  Kilbride, 
M.  P.;  James  L.  Carew,  M.  P.;  John  O'Conner,  M.  P.;  Dr.  Tan- 
ner, M.  P.;  and  Mr.  Condon,  M.  P.  On  the  23d  of  January,  Mr. 
David  Sheehy,  M.  P.,  who  had  made  a  speech  for  the  Liberal  candi- 
date at  Govan,  where  the  Conservatives  were  signally  defeated, 
was  arrested  under  the  Irish  Coercion  Act. 

In  every  form  of  stri(!ture,  Coercion  is  at  its  highest  point  as  the 
year  1889  opens.  Evictions  are  proceeding  with  unexampled 
ferocity.  The  blind  hope  of  the  landlord  party  appears  to  be  that, 
while  they  have  the  power  in  their  hands,  it  is  their  best  policy  to 
sweep  the  people  and  their  homes  off  the  land,  even  if  a  desert  is 
produced.  It  is  the  Cromwellian  policy  over  again,  with  writs 
and  crow-bar  brigades  instead  of  halters  and  slave-ships. 

But  banishment  has  turned  out  to  be  not  a  cure  but  a  disease 
worse  than  the  original.  The  wiser  and  more  patriotic  half  of 
England  acknowledges  this,  and  is  working  to  undo  the  evil.  The 
cruel  expatriation  of  the  Irish  people  has  filled  the  world  with 
enemies,  not  only  of  aristocratic  landlordism,  but  of  the  English 
power  that  supports  the  system.  Ireland  has  won  a  lasting  victory 
in  proving  to  Liberal  England  that  the  Tories  are  not  legislating 
for  the  empire,  but  for  their  own  limited  class  and  its  privileges. 

Il6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

But  even  under  the  darkest  cloud  that  Ireland  has  known  since 
1798,  it  is  true  and  obvious  that  the  unhappy  nation  stands  in  a 
more  hopeful  and  advantageous  position  than  it  has  ever  occupied 
since  the  Norman  invasion.  For  the  first  time  in  history  there  is 
a  powerful  English  party  with  a  national  platform  of  Home  Rule 
for  Ireland.  And  this  is  no  transient  or  personal  movement,  de- 
pending on  one  British  leader.  It  is  the  formalized  policy  of  the 
English  Liberal  party — a  programme  that  is  absolutely  certain  of 

It  is  said  by  many,  and  hoped  by  the  Tories,  that  the  death  of 
Mr.  Gladstone  or  of  Mr.  Parnell  would  assuredly  begin  the  decline 
of  the  Home  Rule  movement.  The  contrary  is  the  safer  prophecy. 
Though  it  is  to  be  hoped  that  Mr.  Gladstone  and  Mr.  Parnell  will 
live  to  carry  out  the  noble  measure  they  have  begun,  it  is  certain 
now  that  the  death  of  one,  or  even  of  both,  would  only  remove 
from  the  Home  Rule  movement  an  element  of  personality,  and 
leave  it  stronger  than  before.  A  reform  is  never  at  its  full  strength 
so  long  as  it  depends  on  one  or  two  men,  but  when  it  has  become 
part  of  the  moral  or  common  sense  of  the  people. 

From  this  standpoint,  the  Parnell  Commission,  with  its  incredible 
vileness  in  the  witness-box,  and  its  open  partizanship  on  the  bench  ; 
the  widespread  evictions  and  burning  of  peasant  }i£)mes  in  Ireland  ; 
the  jails  filled  with  the  honored  representatives  of  the  people ;  the 
influences  of  the  Church  implored  to  help  the  mailed  hand  of  co- 
ercion— all  these  are  signs  favorable.  They  remove  the  Irish 
question  from  the  care  of  party  leaders,  and  place  the  responsi- 
bility on  English  conscience  and  civilization. 

The  patent  evils  of  perjury,  eviction,  misery  and  unrest  are  the 
eruption  of  the  disease  of  misgovernment  that  must  be  speedily 
cured,  not  by  local  repression,  but  by  constitutional  remedies. 

Mr.  Parnell  himself,  speaking  on  December  27th,  after  the  ad- 
journment of  the  Commission,  summed  up  the  proceedings  in  these 
words :  "  As  to  the  general  charges  brought  against  our  organiza- 
tion and  movement,  that  is  a  matter  of  speculation,  and,  to  some 
extent,  of  history,  and  a  law-court  is  no  more  competent  to  decide 
it  than  anybody  else.  Up  to  the  present,  the  Times  has  not  got 
beyond  a  general  description  of  the  disturbed  state  of  Ireland. 
Every  attempt  to  connect,  not  us  personally — for  there  hasn't 
been  even  an  attempt  to  do  that,  except  in  the  ridiculous  story 
about  Harrington  told  by  an  informer — but  every  attempt  to  con- 
nect our  organization  with  crime,  has  completely  broken  down. 
As  to  the  forged  letters,  let  me  confine  myself  strictly  to  the 
statement  that  we  shall  prove  our  case  to  the  hilt." 

Nothing  could  better  close  this  article  than  the  words  that  closed 
the  year  1888  for  Ireland  from   Pope  Leo  XIII.,  added  to  those 

The   Year  1888— ^4  Retrospect  and  a  Prospect,  117 

of  Mr.  Parnell.     Here  are  the  words  of  the  Pope,  addressed  to 
the  Irish  people  through  the  Archbishop  of  Dubhn : 

"  Whilst  we  embrace  with  a  father's  love  every  member  of  the  fold  of  Christ,  which 
He  has  entrusted  to  our  keeping,  our  most  special  care,  the  first  place  in  our  thoughts  is 
reserved  for  those  whom  we  know  to  be  sufferers  from  misfortune.  For  we  are  moved 
by  that  instinct  which  nature  has  implanted  in  the  heart  of  every  parent  to  love  and 
cherish,  beyond  all  the  rest,  those  of  their  children  who  have  been  stricken  by  any 
calamity.  For  this  reason,  we  have  always  held  in  a  special  feeling  of  affection  the 
Catholics  of  Ireland,  long  and  sorely  tried  by  so  many  afflictions.  And  we  have 
ever  cherished  them  with  a  love  all  the  more  intense,  for  their  marvellous  fortitude 
under  those  sufferings  and  for  their  hereditary  attachment  to  their  religion,  which  no 
pressure  of  misfortune  has  ever  been  able  to  destroy  or  weaken. 

"  As  to  the  counsels  that  we  have  given  them  from  time  to  time,  and  our  recent 
decree,  we  were  moved  in  these  things  not  only  by  the  consideration  of  what  is  con- 
formable to  truth  and  justice,  but  also  by  the  desire  of  advancing  your  interests.  For 
such  is  our  affection  for  you  that  it  does  not  suffer  us  to  allow  the  cause  in  which  Ire- 
land is  struggling  to  be  weakened  by  the  introduction  of  anything  that  could  justly  be 
brought  in  reproach  against  it." 


HABITUAL  introspection  at  the  close  of  each  day  is  strongly- 
recommended  by  the  Catholic  Church  as  one  of  the  most 
effective  means  for  self-improvement.  For  each  sunrise  and  each 
sunset  implies  for  the  individual  a  nearer  and  nearer  approach  to 
that  last  day  on  which  the  transitory  earthly  habitation  will  be  left 
behind,  and  therewith  the  time  ended  during  which  it  lies  within  our 
power  to  prepare  ourselves  for  timeless  eternity.  The  wisdom  of 
this  injunction  is  too  apparent  to  require  any  elucidation.  And  in 
a  similar  sense,  we  take  it,  the  larger  life  of  nations,  and  the  life  of 
mankind  as  a  whole,  stand  also  in  need  of  having  their  days  from 
time  to  time  carefully  examined.  What  a  day  means  for  the  indi- 
vidual, that  a  year  may  be  said  to  mean  in  the  life  of  a  nation,  and 
a  still  longer  period,  a  century,  in  the  life  of  the  world. 

There  is  much  in  the  year  1888  that  may  escape  superficial  ex- 
amination and  yet  forms  the  raison  d'etre  why  history  will  attach 
to  it  greater  importance,  not  so  much,  however,  in  the  outer,  but 
rather  in  the  inner,  life  of  the  civilized  world. 

During  the  last  twelve  great  battles  were  fought,  no 
war  cast  its  gloom  over  Europe,  no  invention  like  that  of  steam  or 

Il8  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

electricity  is  to  be  recorded.  But  the  series  of  events  which  took 
place  impresses  us  deeply  when  we  look  below  their  surface  and  try 
to  understand  their  significance  for  the  future.  Unless  the  "  yes- 
terday" stands  vividly  before  our  eyes,  how  can  we  forecast  the 
"  to-morrow  "  ?  The  Papal  jubilee  ushered  in  '88,  an  omen  auspi- 
cious in  itself.  Death  struck  twice  the  ruler  of  Germany,  while 
Austria  and  Greece  celebrated  the  fortieth  and  twenty-fifth  anni- 
versaries of  their  respective  rulers.  In  the  United  States  the  result 
of  the  election  for  President  put  again  the  Republican  party  into 
power.  These  events  in  themselves  possess  hardly  enough  intrin- 
sic value  to  mark  1888  as  a  year  memorable  in  the  annals  of  history, 
since  they  register  merely  what  might  be  called,  not  inappropriately, 
"  family  events,"  affecting  the  Catholics,  affecting  Germany,  Aus- 
tria, Greece  and  the  United  States,  but  not  the  civilized  world  at 
large.  So,  at  least,  the  casual  observer  may  hold ;  but  how  dif- 
ferent he  will  judge  when  he  analyses  these  seeming  family  events. 
The  Papal  jubilee,  as  a  feast,  concerned,  strictly  speaking,  only 
the  Catholic  world.  For  the  fact  that  an  old  man  who  happens 
to  sit  in  the  chair  of  St.  Peter  celebrates  the  fiftieth  anniversary 
of  his  ordination  to  the  priesthood,  is  not  in  itself  of  any  historical 
importance.  Many  priests  all  the  world  over  do  every  year  the 
same,  and  it  remains  a  personal,  a  local  affair.  It  is,  of  course, 
easy  to  understand  that  if  that  priest  happens  to  be  the  Pope,  the 
Catholic  world  seizes  the  opportunity  to  offer  its  congratulations 
to  the  head  of  the  Church  and  give  expression  to  its  sense  of  filial 
attachment  and  loyal  devotion.  But  the  jubilee  of  Pope  Leo  XIII. 
meant  more,  much  more.  He  is  not  only  Pope,  but  he  is  also  the 
prisoner  in  the  Vatican  ;  and  yet,  to  pay  homage  to  that  prisoner, 
Protestant  rulers,  and  even  those  outside  the  pale  of  Christianity, 
the  Sultan,  and  the  Shah  of  Persia,  and  the  Emperor  of  China,  vied 
with  each  other  by  personal  letter  and  by  costly  gifts.  Those 
prophets,  therefore,  who  had  predicted  that  the  fall  of  Rome  signi- 
fied the  end  of  the  Papal  power,  were  rudely  shaken  in  their  belief 
The  Papal  jubilee  was  undeniably  the  occasion  to  show  to  an  in- 
credulous world  that  the  Papal  authority  survived  the  loss  of  tem- 
poral power,  and  was  still  a  universally  recognized  fact.  It  was 
seen  that,  instead  of  having  sunk  into  the  grave  when  Rome  be- 
came the  capital  of  the  Italian  Kingdom,  the  Papacy  under  Leo 
XIII.  exercised  a  wide  influence,  wielded  a  vast  power.  Few  of 
his  most  illustrious  predecessors  in  the  chair  of  St.  Peter  were  as 
much  the  objects  of  honor  and  distinction  by  sovereigns  and  rulers 
all  over  the  world  as  Leo  XIII.  The  present  ruler  of  Christen- 
dom combines,  it  is  true,  qualities  in  his  person  such  as  few  men 
are  endowed  with.  Rare  intellectual  gifts,  and  uncommon  depth 
of  learning,  an  unusually  comprehensive  statesmanship,  a  wisdom 

The  Year  1888— /4  Retrospect  and  a  Prospect.  119 

and  moderation  as  great  as  his  piety  and  firmness,  all  helped  to 
secure  that  tribute  of  recognition  which  the  world  never  refuses  to 
greatness.  Yet  it  would  be  erroneous  to  believe  that  it  was  the 
person  alone  to  whom  the  world  hastened  to  express  its  deep 
sense  of  admiration ;  it  was  much  more  the  office,  the  ruler  of 
Christianity,  the  head  of  the  Catholic  world,  that  was  honored. 
And  therein,  it  seems  to  us,  lies  hidden  a  tacit  acknowledgment 
that  deserves  to  be  weighed  carefully. 

Nor  is  this  all.  The  Papal  jubilee  taught  men  still  more.  It 
demonstrated  by  irresistible  facts  the  marvellous,  though  silent 
and  unostentatious,  growth  of  the  Church  and  faithful  allegiance 
and  loyal  devotion  of  the  millions  of  children  who  look  upon  the 
Pope  as  their  spiritual  father;  it  showed  the  deathless  Church 
marching  onward  and  forward  to  victory  on  its  mission  of  saving 
mankind.  For  months  and  months  countless  numbers  of  pilgrims 
went  to  the  Eternal  City  to  show  that  in  every  climate,  in  every 
nation,  in  every  country  there  were  subjects  whose  fervent  adhe- 
rence to  the  Bishop  of  Rome  could  not  be  doubted.  The  Vatican 
Exhibition  undeceived  men  and  furnished  an  evidence,  more  pre- 
cious than  the  gifts  it  contained,  that  Christianity  has  an  indwell- 
ing, indestructible  power  of  expansion.  If  the  past  had  not  offered 
sufficient  testimony  that  neither  tyranny  nor  persecution,  neither 
heresy  nor  schism,  could  shake  the  edifice  built  upon  a  rock,  the 
present  witnessed  at  all  events  that  the  Pope,  even  in  prison,  rules 
Catholicity,  and  without  having  lost  influence,  which  the  infallible 
head  of  an  infallible  creed  must  needs  wield.  The  tie  that  binds 
head  and  members  of  the  body  Catholic  together  does  not  consist 
in  the  undisputed  ownership  of  Rome ;  Italy  perceived  that  the 
city  on  the  Tiber  is  the  Eternal  City  only  because  of  the  relation- 
ship of  the  Pope  to  it,  deprived  though  he  is  of  exercising  his  law- 
ful rights  over  the  same.  The  enemies  of  Christianity  learnt  that 
the  Pope's  voice  is  still  the  voice  of  authority,  notwithstanding  his 
confinement,  and  the  obligation  to  obey  it  is  not  destroyed  by  his 
imprisonment.  The  anomalous  position  of  the  one  sovereign  who 
has  subjects  in  every  part  of  the  world,  and  of  every  tongue  and 
color,  was  in  a  singular  manner  illustrated  also  during  1888.  The 
one  great  fact,  then,  which  the  past  year  forces  upon  our  attention, 
lies  in  the  general  pCiblic  recognition  of  the  Catholic  Church  as  the 
one  religion  possessing  a  vitality,  a  strength,  a  vigor  which  neither 
time  abates  nor  adverse  circumstances  change. 

The  young  German  empire  buried  within  three  months  no  less 
than  two  emperors.  The  one,  William  I.,  who  had  led  the  united 
German  forces  from  victory  to  victory  and  thereby  cemented  the 
nation  into  one  great  whole,  who  had  been  the  instrument  chosen 
by  Providence  to  erect  the  new  empire,  who  was  allowed  to  out- 

I20  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

live  the  threescore  and  ten  allotted  to  man,  and  who  was  at  once 
a  model  of  kingly  dignity  and  modesty,  was  called  away  in  Feb- 
ruary, and  the  whole  nation  in  deep  mourning  followed  his  bier. 
Nor  stood  that  grief  long  alone,  for  his  son  and  successor,  Fred- 
eric I.,  who  was  then  already  the  sure  victim  of  an  incurable  afflic- 
tion and  had  undergone  a  terrible  operation,  so  that  death  with  him 
was  but  a  question  of  time.  Ninety-nine  days  after  his  father's 
death  the  son  died,  and  so  the  two  who  had  taken  the  most  active 
part  in  fashioning  the  empire  of  Germany  were  both  laid  in  the 
grave  before  spring's  noontide.  If  the  long  life  and  venerable  form 
and  eventful  career  had  endeared  William  I.  to  all  German  hearts, 
the  manly  fortitude  and  heroic  suffering  of  Frederic  I.  touched 
their  chords  of  sympathy  and  engraved  the  memory  of  his  short 
reign  in  no  less  vivid  characters  upon  the  annals  of  German  his- 
tory. Grave  were  the  misgivings  entertained  by  the  cabinets  of 
Europe  for  the  peace  of  Europe  at  the  demise  of  William  I.,  graver 
still  when  Frederic  I.'s  death  was  announced  and  the  grandson 
who  had  buried  two  progenitors  within  so  short  a  time  assumed 
the  reins  of  government  as  William  II.  Russia's  attitude  in  the 
southeast  of  Europe,  and  the  movement  of  military  forces  towards 
the  Prussian  and  Austrian  frontiers,  was  a  menace  to  the  peace  of 
Europe.  France,  still  unable  to  forget  I'annee  terrible,  conjured 
up  another  dark  cloud  on  the  political  horizon.  For,  Boulanger's 
success  might  bring  on  a  war,  and  if  so  no  one  could  foresee  what 
dimensions  it  would  assume.  The  youthful  emperor  of  Germany 
was,  moreover,  presumed  to  be  full  of  a  warlike  spirit,  and  so  un- 
easy apprehensions  prevailed  lest  the  drum  should  beat  the  alarum 
that  would  summon  some  twelve  millions  of  men  under  arms  and 
precipitate  the  Continent  into  a  struggle  which  would  raise  heca- 
tombs of  men  and  leave  countless  widows  and  orphans  to  mourn 
for  the  bread-winners  that  fell  on  the  battlefields.  But  that  dread 
also,  happily,  passed  away.  Mindful  of  the  bequest  of  grandfather 
and  father,  the  young  emperor  dispelled  the  fears  connected  with 
his  accession  to  the  throne  by  a  series  of  visits  to  St.  Petersburg, 
Vienna  and  Rome  which,  while  they  threw  out  in  bold  relief  the 
position  accorded  to  Germany  by  all  European  powers,  offered  at 
the  same  time  a  guarantee  that  the  triple  alliance  formed  by  Ger- 
many, Austria  and  Italy  was  no  empty  sound,- and  that  whosoever 
ventured  to  disturb  the  internal  development  of  the  nations  would 
be  confronted  by  the  combined  forces,  an  encounter  promising  to 
be  fraught  with  dire  consequences  for  the  disturber,  in  view  of  the 
numerical  strength  and  discipline  of  the  armies  of  the  allied  powers. 
The  bonds  of  union  between  Prussia  proper  and  the  German  rulers, 
as  also  with  the   northern  kingdoms,  Sweden  and   Norway  and 

The  Year  1888—^  Retrospect  and  a  Prospect.  121 

Denmark,  were  solidified  by  William  II.  after  his  return  from  the 
visit  to  the  Czar. 

The  one  visit,  however,  which  best  bespeaks  the  attitude  of  the 
Protestant  Emperor  was  his  visit  to  the  Pope.  As  guest  of  the 
King  of  Italy  in  the  latter's  capital,  he  could  not  drive  in  Italian 
court  carriages  to  the  Vatican  to  pay  his  respects  to  the  Pope ;  for 
that  might  have  been  construed,  with  a  good  deal  of  semblance  of 
truth,  into  an  official  recognition  of  the  present  status  of  the  Papacy. 
Therefore  a  course  was  pursued  that  cannot  be  distorted  into  any 
such  construction.  All  embassies  are,  as  is  well  known,  terri- 
tories of  the  respective  states  whose  ambassadors  reside  therein,  and 
the  German  embassy  at  Rome  is,  of  course,  no  exception  in  this 
respect.  So  the  German  Emperor  drove  from  his  own  territory, 
viz.,  the  German  embassy,  and  not  in  carriages  belonging  to  the 
king  of  Italy,  but  in  his  own  court  carriage,  drawn  by  his  own 
horses,  all  of  which  had  for  that  express  purpose  been  transported 
from  Berlin  to  Rome,  to  the  Vatican,  and  back  from  there  again 
to  the  German  embassy.  The  Liberal  press  tried  hard  to  misrep- 
resent this  affair  and  give  it  a  very  different  coloring,  but  the  facts 
themselves  do  not  warrant  any  other  interpretation  than  this,  that 
the  German  emperor,  with  a  consideration  equalled  only  by  his 
tact,  studiously  and  successfully  avoided  giving  by  his  action  any 
official  approval,  as  it  were,  of  the  existing  state  of  affairs  regard- 
ing the  Papacy.  Add  to  this  that,  in  order  to  silence  the  various 
rumors  which  some  journals  spread,  the  official  organ  of  the  Chan- 
cellor of  the  German  empire  wrote :  "  In  Prussia  the  position  of  the 
Pope  as  the  head  of  the  Church,  to  which  a  good  third  of  Prussian 
stibjects  belong,  is  officially  recognized,  and  the  Pope  as  the  head 
of  the  Bishops  forms  part  of  our  institutions."  Thus  it  is  patent 
that  the  enemies  of  the  Church  tried  in  vain  to  transmute  the  visit 
of  William  II.  to  Leo  XIII.  into  an  approval  of  the  loss  of  tempo- 
ral power.  The  youthful  German  emperor  has  no  doubt  disap- 
pointed the  sanguine  hopes  of  the  enemies  of  Rome,  as  he  likewise 
disappointed  the  enemies  of  peace. 

Turning  now  to  Austro-Hungary,  the  jubilee  celebrated  there 
derives  much  of  its  significance  from  a  brief  reflection  upon  the 
past.  Austria  has  borne  for  600  years  the  dignity  and  the  heavy 
responsibility  of  the  "  Christian"  empire  and  the  obligation  result- 
ing therefrom  to  stand  by  the  Church  of  Rome.  Her  rulers  were 
the  born  protectors  of  Christianity  and  of  the  Christian  social  and 
political  institutions.  She  is  the  one  State  in  which  the  .dignity  of 
legitimacy,  the  *'  Kingdom  by  the  grace  of  God,"  has  been  pre- 
served, that  is  to  say,  the  social  kingdom  as  given  by  natural  and 
revealed  right ;  she  is  the  one  State  which  has  not  spent  itself  m 
the  service  of  a  socially  and  economically  and  religiously  diseased 

122  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

Liberalism ;  she  it  was  that  protected  Catholicity  against  Protes- 
tantism in  the  Thirty  Years'  War ;  she  stood  up  for  Christianity 
against  Islamism;  she  stood  foremost  and  longest  against  the 
French  conqueror.  Napoleon's  first  defeat,  at  Aspern,  Austria, 
unaided,  administered,  and  at  Leipzig,  in  the  final  struggle,  her  Gen- 
eral commanded  the  allied  forces.  The  monarchy,  by  the  union 
of  different  nationalities  under  one  head,  was  a  political  symbol  of 
Christ's  Church.  The  historic  mission  of  Austria  is  its  right  of 
existence,  and  that  mission  consists  now  in  reviving  Christian 
principles  in  the  life  of  the  State,  in  cementing  by  unity  of  faith 
and  Christian  charity  the  nations  together  which  nationalism  mis- 
led and  separated,  in  ousting  Liberalism  and  replacing  it  by  Chris- 
tian socialism.  Burdened  at  once  with  the  cross  and  the  imperial 
crown  of  thorns,  Austria  has  followed  the  way  of  the  cross  through 
history.  There  has  not  been  wanting  in  its  life  the  Judas  Iscariot 
of  Liberalism  and  of  Pessimism ;  but  there  has  also  never  been 
wanting  those  who  guided  on  the  State  with  unchangeable  loyalty 
and  faith  in  its  providential  mission,  and  it  was  the  present  Em- 
peror's fate  to  lead  the  people  under  his  septre  through  many 
vicissitudes  in  a  course  which  promises  a  social  reconstruction  on 
entirely  Christian  principles.  The  spirit  of  the  age  did  not  pass 
by  Austria,  but  while  it  was  able  to  taint,  it  was  unable  to  corrupt 
the  realm.  In  1848,  when  the  principles  of  1789  moved  like  a 
hailstorm  over  middle  Europe,  Austria  too  had  its  revolution,  and 
it  was  then  that  Francis  Joseph,  at  the  age  of  eighteen,  had  to 
ascend  the  throne  and  embark  upon  the  difficult  task  of  bringing 
order  out  of  chaos.  The  Liberal  ideas  converted  the  Empire  into 
a  Constitutional  Monarchy,  but  for  the  last  eleven  years  the  Gov- 
ernment is  again  in  the  trustworthy  hands  of  a  Catholic  Cabinet 
which  proceeds  on  the  right  line.  The  form  which  the  celebra- 
tion of  the  fortieth  anniversary  of  his  reign  assumed  at  the  express 
wish  of  the  emperor,  illustrates  best  the  principles  that  animate 
this  benevolent  ruler.  Whatever  the  provinces,  cities,  towns,  vil- 
lages or  private  persons  intended  to  do  to  commemorate  the  event 
should  be  devoted  to  charity  and  to  the  alleviation  of  suffering; 
that  was  his  express  wish.  So  the  poor  and  the  helpless,  the  or- 
phan and  the  widow,  the  aged  and  the  infirm,  are  the  recipients  of 
the  gifts  which  royalty  and  personal  attachment  and  veneration 
prompted  all  to  lay  at  the  emperor's  feet.  Hardly  a  day  of  the 
year  1888  passed  without  a  notice  in  the  press  that  here  a  blind 
asylum  had  its  corner-stone  laid,  there  a  hospital,  here  a  fund  for 
the  support  of  aged  laborers  been  donated,  there  a  house  for  the 
education  of  poor  children  established.  His  private  charities, 
unknown  to  the  public,  reach  far  beyond  the  sum  of  which  any- 
thing is  known.     Thus  Austria  has,  indeed,  very  good  reason  to 


The  Year  1888—^  Retrospect  and  a  Prospect,  123 

pray  to  the  Ruler  above  for  a  long  life  to  its  ruler,  "  by  the  grace 
of  God,"  below. 

The  small  kingdom  of  Greece,  after  having  passed  through 
many  ordeals,  recovers  gradually  from  them  under  George  I., 
whose  twenty-fifth  anniversary  occurred  in  November,  and  offered 
a  welcome  occasion  to  the  people  and  to  all  friendly  powers  to 
felicitate  the  king  on  his  successful  reign.  The  betrothal  of  his 
son,  the  heir  to  the  throne,  to  the  sister  of  the  German  emperor, 
augurs  well  for  the  future  of  that  country.  Of  the  other  European 
states,  little  of  moment,  from  a  historical  standpoint,  is  to  be  men- 

In  Russia  the  Czar  and  his  family  had  a  narrow,  almost  miracu- 
lous, escape  from  a  terrible  railway  accident,  which  may  have  con- 
tributed to  bringing  about  a  decidedly  more  pacific  policy.  The 
triple  alliance  rendered,  of  course,  an  indefinite  postponement  of 
any  scheme  of  aggrandizement  very  desirable  for  the  present.  The 
decline  of  Pan-Slavism  in  Servia  forebodes  an  era  of  peaceful 
development  in  that  little  kingdom,  as  well  as  in  the  neighboring 
Bulgaria,  whose  ruler.  Prince  Ferdinand  of  Coburg,  though  not 
officially  recognized  by  the  signatory  powers  of  the  treaty  of  Ber- 
lin, strives  to  develop  the  resources  of  the  country  and  to  improve 
its  internal  condition.  The  unhappy  republic  of  France  appears  to 
drift  along  without  knowing  whither.  The  danger  of  a  dictator- 
ship under  the  would-be  hero-general  Boulanger  was  hardly 
averted  by  the  ridicule  which  the  issue  of  his  duel  with  Floquet 
threw  upon  him,  before  he  achieved  fresh  electoral  triumphs,  and 
again  a  revision  of  the  constitution  loomed  up.  What  it  may  lead 
to  nobody  can  foretell  who  knows  the  French  character. 

An  event  of  far-reaching  importance  is,  however,  the  result  of 
the  Presidential  election  in  the  United  States.  For  the  return 
into  power  of  the  Republican  party  at  the  expiration  of  President 
Cleveland's  term  of  office  means  a  radical  change  in  the  policy  of 
the  Government.  Inasmuch  as  it  is  the  mission  of  the  United 
States  to  prove  that  Liberalism  and  Christianity  do  not  exclude 
each  other,  it  remains  to  be  seen  how  far  the  admitted  tendency 
of  the  Republican  party  will  devote  itself  to  a  reform  of  the  social 
order  which,  in  the  United  States  as  well  as  in  Europe,  is  much 
needed,  and  attracts  already  the  undivided  attention  of  the  states- 
men in  the  several  European  commonwealths. 

This  brief  summary  of  the  strictly  speaking  historical  events  of 
1888  hardly  furnishes  material  for  singling  it  out  as  a  memorable 
one  in  the  history  of  the  world.  Deaths  of  rulers  and  anniver- 
saries of  rulers  concern,  as  has  been  said,  the  respective  nations 
rather  than  the  world,  and  so  likewise  the  change  of  party  in  the 

124  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

great  American  republic.  If  we  insist,  nevertheless,  that  1888 
signalizes  the  beginning  of  a  new  epoch,  the  reason  for  it  must  lie 
of  necessity  outside  the  array  of  facts  that  stand  forth  as  historical 
landmarks.     And  this,  we  contend,  is  precisely  the  case. 

Whether  it  be  due  to  the  warning  words  uttered  by  Leo  XIII. 
at  the  very  beginning  of  his  Pontificate,  that  a  social  crisis  is  near 
at  hand  and  can  be  solved  only  by  reintegrating  the  principles  of 
Christianity  into  the  life  of  the  nations,  or  whether  it  be  due  to  the 
overwhelming  evidence  of  the  necessity  of  doing  something  for  a 
proletariate  that  increases  at  an  alarming  rate,  matters  little.  The 
fact  remains  that  a  consciousness  of  a  social  disturbance  has  ob- 
tained general  currency,  and  that  it  is  felt  that  thorough-going 
reforms  are  needed  for  averting  a  serious  calamity.  For  proof  of 
this  we  have  to  turn  simply  to  legislative  measures,  partly  enacted, 
partly  proposed,  in  nearly  every  Parliament,  in  order  to  perceive 
that  a  decided  veering  round  from  Liberal  to  the  only  sound 
Christian  principles  is  noticeable.  If  not  an  open  and  outspoken 
return  to  Christian  social  principles,  it  is  at  any  rate  a  tacit  recog- 
nition of  the  social  value  of  Christianity.  Consequently,  it  seems 
to  us  that  this  year  will  some  day  be  marked  "  Return  to  Christian 
Socialism,"  and  therefore  deserves  to  be  looked  upon  as  one  of 
vital  importance  in  the  history  of  culture  and  progress. 

The  modern  economic  system,  un-Christian  in  its  essence,  and 
more  so  still  in  its  application,  has  wrought  havoc  in  all  countries, 
whether  Catholic  or  not.  No  government  escaped  the  scourge  of 
Liberalism,  and  of  what  Liberalism  necessarily  entails,  "  capital- 
ism." The  social  elements  which  Christian  ethics  has  properly 
balanced  were  unhinged  by  the  delusive  promise  that  the  larger 
share  of  liberty  opened  to  all  an  equal  chance  to  attain  whatever 
happiness  man  can  attain  in  this  world.  Religion,  as  a  purely  indi- 
vidual matter,  was  eliminated  from  the  social  order.  After  a  lapse 
of  forty  years,  since  in  1848  the  Liberal  ideas  obtained  vogue  with 
more  or  less  intensity  everywhere,  the  results  of  the  Liberal  eco- 
nomic and  social  system  are  before  us,  and  in  a  transparent  clear- 
ness which  admits  of  no  denial. 

The  common  laborer,  of  course,  felt  first  the  effects,  and  hence 
the  labor  question  disturbed  first  of  all  the  social  order.  It  was 
found  that  the  absolute  freedom  given  him  by  Liberalism  con- 
verted him  into  the  absolute  slave  of  the  employer.  But  the  labor 
question  did  not  remain  long  alone.  The  agrarian  question  is 
now  felt  in  the  United  States  and  in  Europe  alike.  The  farmer  is 
unable  to  make  both  ends  meet;  the  sale  of  his  crops  barely 
pays  for  the  labor,  and  leaves  him  no  profit.  The  burden  of  taxa- 
tion grows  heavier  and  heavier,  and  the  peasantry  groan  under  a 
load  which  has  become  unbearable.     A  fatal  credit  system,  a  no 

The   Year  1888—^  Retrospect  and  a  Prospect.  125 

less  fatal  right  to  divide  and  subdivide  holdings,  a  reckless  devas- 
tation of  forests,  and  the  like  changes,  impoverished  gradually  but 
surely  the  mainstay  of  all  agricultural  countries.  At  their  expense 
the  number  and  the  wealth  of  the  capitalists  increased.  The  man 
who  finds  tilling  the  soil  a  road  to  the  poorhouse  abandons  the 
plow  and  looks  for  employment  in  the  city,  and  the  steadily  grow- 
ing number  of  unemployed  depresses  in  turn  the  price  of  labor,  as 
is  always  the  case  when  the  supply  exceeds  the  demand.  Then 
there  are  the  small  trades-people.  The  master  of  the  workshop, 
utterly  unable  to  compete  with  the  cheaper  machine-made  pro- 
ducts of  corporations,  must,  after  a  desperate  struggle,  close  it,  part 
with  his  independence  and  himself  seek  employment  in  the  very 
factory  that  broke  him  up.  He  necessarily  swells  the  number  of  the 
discontented.  And  even  the  small  capitalist  fares  not  much  better. 
Against  the  big  syndicate  and  money-institutions  he  has  no  power, 
and  the  process  of  absorption  reduces  him  also  in  course  of  time 
to  a  salaried  employee,  a  laborer  after  all.  The  big  fish  eat  the 
little  fish  in  the  brook,  in  the  lake,  in  the  ocean  ;  and  so  they  do  in 
social  life.  Productive  labor  has  thus  become  everywhere  the 
slave  of  capital's  tyranny.  That  is  the  true  statement  of  how  so- 
ciety stands  to-day.  As  the  iron  Chancellor  strongly  put  it :  "I 
will  not  see  the  aged  laborer  perish  on  the  dunghill."  It  had 
come  to  that  almost,  and  hence  it  was  high  time  for  inaugurating 

The  fact  that  nearly  all  civilized  countries  have  enacted  laws 
limiting  the  hours  of  labor,  restricting  the  employment  of  children 
in  factories,  protecting  women  during  the  time  of  pregnancy,  and 
that,  moreover,  the  lines  along  which  these  measures  move  are 
not  diverging,  but  converging,  serves  as  a  welcome  sign  that  more 
correct  ideas  begin  to  supersede  the  notions  of  Liberalism  on 
these  points.  The  republic  of  Switzerland  has,  indeed,  taken,  the 
initiative  to  bring  about,  if  possible,  an  international  labor  legisla- 
tion. For,  only  uniform  laws  promise  wholesome  and  lasting  relief 
in  times  when  a  few  hours'  ride  or  a  passage  across  the  Atlantic 
can  transfer  the  laborer  from  one  country  to  another. 

What  underlies  the  labor  question,  underlies  likewise  all  other 
problems.  The  highest  law  that  should  regulate  the  relations  of 
man  to  man  in  the  socal  order,  is  that  of  "justice,"  just  as  "  char- 
ity "  is  the  highest  law  in  the  moral  order.  That  law  of  justice, 
as  established  by  Christianity,  has,  to  the  detriment  of  mankind, 
been  utterly  wiped  out  by  Liberalism.  Applied  to  labor,  it  pro- 
claims the  principle  that  should  equal  the  compensation  paid  for 
labor  equal  its  value.  This  principle  underlies  the  Christian  idea 
of  justice,  and  it  certainly  is  plain  and  simple  enough.  But  what 
business  could  continue  to  exist  were  it  all  at  once  introduced  in 

126  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

our  day !  So  with  the  agrarian  question,  the  small  trades  ques- 
tion, etc.;  they  all  succumbed  to  the  elimination  of  the  law  of 
Christian  justice,  which  elimination  has  divided  men  practically 
into  two  classes,  the  oppressors  and  the  oppressed. 

The  plutocracy,  whose  formation  has  been  going  on  in  every  state 
during  the  last  few  decades,  owes  its  origin  and  existence  only  to 
the  extirpation  of  the  Christian  idea  of  justice  from  society,  and  has 
brought  on  that  unnatural  struggle  after  wealth  as  the  ''  summum 
bonum!'  but  which  in  the  end  proves  destructive  of  the  very  basis 
of  society.  For,  is  it  reasonable  to  be  expected  that  the  oppres- 
sors, growing  fewer  in  proportion  to  the  wealth  amassed,  can  keep 
the  oppressed,  that  large  mass  of  discontented  which  intuitively 
have  a  sense  of  suffering  from  a  social  condition  that  is  wrong,  in 
a  state  of  abject  and  inactive  submission.  The  alternative  con- 
sists either  in  a  frantic  outbreak  which  will  override  all  laws  and 
all  institutions  and  wreck  our  civilization,  or  else  in  timely  reforms 
on  the  one  basis  upon  which  Christian  society  has  been  erected. 

Poor  always  did  exist ;  they  always  will  continue  to  exist  as  long 
as  human  beings  people  the  globe.  But  "  paupers"  are  a  creation 
of  Liberalism.  We  hear  much  about  the  energetic  efforts  on  the 
part  of  Liberals  to  stave  the  tide  of  pauperism,  but  a  few  morsels 
of  bread  thrown  to  a  hungry  crowd  do  not  appease  its  hunger. 
The  modern  Liberal  searches  diligently  enough  for  the  almost 
invisible  baccillus,  but  fails  to  see  that  big  worm  "  capitalism"  that 
gnaws  on  the  intestines  of  every  nation.  The  anarchists  and  the 
bomb-throwers  and  the  dynamiters  talk  one  and  the  same  lan- 
guage. The  land  doctrine  of  Henry  George  and  the  theories  of  Karl 
Marx  have  secured  fanatical  followers  only  because  men  driven 
nearly  to  despair  cling  to  any  promise  of  relief  without  weighing 
either  soundness  of  doctrine  or  possibility  of  relief.  Nor  is  it  at  all 
surprising  to  find  an  ignorant  multitude  unable  to  discriminate 
between  what  is  right  and  just  and  what  is  wrong  and  unjust,  when 
we  reflect  how  the  judgment  of  well-educated  persons  has  been 
warped  by  the  Liberal  press.  Newspapers  are  to-day  a  tremen- 
dous social  power,  and  unfortunately  the  press,  which  is  controlled, 
if  not  owned,  by  the  capitalists,  is  permeated  by  the  materialistic 
tendency  of  Liberalism,  and  hence  is  an  instrument  that  has 
caused  many  erroneous  opinions  to  be  formed  on  living  issues. 

All  the  more,  therefore,  must  we  welcome  the  attention  the 
intelligent  public  begins  to  pay  to  those  men  of  heart  and  brain 
who  devote  their  best  energies  to  a  social  reform  on  the  basis  of 
true  Christianity,  a  Baron  Wambold,  a  Prince  Lichtenstein,  a 
Baron  Vogelsang,  the  Dominican  Father  Albert  Weiss,  and  others. 
They  have  done  more  to  enlighten  the  world  and  bring  about  a 
proper  understanding  of  the  social  crisis  than  those  are  willing  to 

The  Year  i88S— ^  Retrospect  and  a  Prospect.  127 

concede  who  are  beginning  to  incorporate  their  teachings  in  legis-  ' 
lative  measures.  This  nucleus  of  CathoHcs  coming,  as  it  does 
more  and  more  to  the  front,  sheds  a  ray  of  bright  hope  over  the 
darkened  sky  of  society.  The  labors  of  these  Christian  social- 
politicians  begin  to  bear  fruit  in  the  general  awakening  of  the 
public  to  a  realization  that  Christianity  is  as  necessary  to  society 
as  it  is  to  the  individual.  Religion,  it  is  seen  at  last,  is  more  than 
a  matter  of  the  individual's  conscience,  and  in  proportion  as  this 
is  understood,  in  the  same  proportion  does  religion  as  a  social 
force,  in  fact  the  most  powerful  and  influential  social  force. 

And  just  here  we  encounter  the  solution  of  the  apparent  enigma, 
namely,  a  Liberal  civilization,  anti-  Christian  by  necessity  rather  than 
by  choice,  paying  an  open  and  willing  tribute  to  the  enlightened 
occupant  of  St.  Peter's  chair.  Men  may  be  loth  to  acknowledge 
it,  but  they  recognize  by  their  actions  that  from  that  chair  are 
spoken  the  only  words  of  wisdom  on  the  social  situation.  The 
refutation  and  condemnation  of  the  erroneous  doctrines  of  the 
day  has  neither  been  attempted  nor  carried  out  in  any  other  quar- 
ter. Rome,  and  Rome  alone,  has  pointed  out  that  the  fundamental 
laws  of  social  existence  have  not  been  changed  by  steam  and  elec- 
tricity and  their  application  to  the  service  of  man ;  that  we  are 
still  human  beings  with  but  a  transitory  home  upon  earth  in  order 
to  prepare  ourselves  as  creatures  endowed  with  reason  and  free- 
will for  our  permanent  home ;  and  that  hence  no  invention,  no 
discovery,  no  philosophy  can  shake  these  primordial  truths,  nor 
what  springs  from  them,  so  that  the  erection  of  a  social  order  on 
any  other  basis  contains  within  its  own  walls  the  guarantee  of 
instability,  and  of  sooner  or  later  crumbling  to  pieces. 

The  sound  sense  of  humanity  revolts  necessarily  against  the 
social  monstrosity  which  Liberalism  has  built  up,  and  the  intense 
yearning  of  mankind  to  reach  its  destiny  cannot  be  rooted  out 
from  the  heart.  The  requirements  of  men  as  social  beings  are 
met  by  the  Christian  social  order,  and  no  other;  co-existence  and 
material  pursuits  are  possible  and  conducive  to  earthly  welfare 
only,  if  all  differences  are  adjusted  according  to  justice  and  equity 
and  charity  as  declared  and  given  by  Christianity,  and  not  accord- 
ing to  human  notions  as  to  what  these  are. 

The  laying  of  a  corner-stone  of  a  Catholic  university  in  the 
national  capital  of  the  United  States  possesses,  in  this  connection, 
a  deep  meaning.  It  bespeaks  the  silent  but  progressive  work  of 
the  Church  ;  it  announces  her  determination  to  prepare  men  fit  to 
cope  with  the  emergencies  of  the  times ;  it  tells  us  that  the  priest 
of  the  future  will  be  equipped  not  only  with  the  knowledge  requi- 
site for  a  proper  discharge  of  those  duties  which  the  spiritual  wel- 
fare  of  the   souls  entrusted  to  his  care  imposes  upon  him,  but 

128  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

also  for  those  larger  and  wider  duties  which  Christian  socialism 
imposes  upon  him  and  adds  on  to  his  other  functions.  It  is,  in 
other  words,  a  challenge  and  a  prophecy  :  a  challenge  to  imitate  her 
who  raises  within  cloister  and  seminary  men  devoted  only  to  serve 
God  through  fellow-man,  and  equips  them  with  the  only  weapon 
which  defies  destruction — truth.  It  is  a  prophecy  in  that  the 
apostles  of  Christian  socialism  which  the  to-morrow  will  need, 
shall  not  be  wanting.  The  reign  of  the  almighty  dollar  may  come 
to  an  end,  the  reign  of  justice  never.  How  far  will  capitalism  be 
ready  to  accord  to  the  Catholic  Church  a  voice  in  shaping  the 
indispensable  legislation  on  social  matters  ?  That,  we  take  it,  is 
the  question  of  the  future  in  the  United  States. 

Some  States  in  Europe  have  made  their  choice;  they  have 
chosen  to  prevent  a  social  revolution  that  unquestionably  would 
wreck  the  achievements  of  our  civilization,  by  engrafting  upon  the 
present  institutions  the  old  ideas  of  the  moral  law,  natural  and 
revealed,  as  furnished  by  Christianity,  and  to  establish  thereby  a 
historic  continuity  with  the  past.  This  is  the  manifesto  of  1888  to 
the  world;  this  the  raison  d'etre  of  its  being  the  dawn  of  a  new 
day  in  the  history  of  humanity's  progress ;  this  the  meaning  of 
the  providential  ordination  that  the  jubilee  of  Rome's  Vicar  and 
the  deaths  of  two  great  rulers  should  proclaim  the  perpetuity  of 
Christ's  Church  on  one  hand,  and  the  transitoriness  of  human 
greatness  on  the  other;  the  firmness  of  the  power  of  God,  the 
weakness  of  even  the  greatest  of  men.  1888  bids  us  recognize 
that  wherever  '* convertere  te  ad  dominum''  is  underst6od  by  so- 
ciety, the  bountiful  blessings  of  divine  mercy  have  not  long  to  be 
waited  for,  and  this  return  to  social  Christianity  on  the  part  of  the 
State  offers  the  guarantee  that  better  days  will  await  the  genera- 
tions who  take  the  lessons  of  1888  to  heart  and  live  up  to  what 
they  enjoin. 

What  has  been  actually  done  towards  a  reorganization  of  society 
on  Christian  principles,  consists  in  rudimentary  beginnings  only, 
whose  main  value  lies  principally  in  the  recognition  of  the  theory; 
but  the  better  comprehension  and  the  ardent  zeal  for  a  social  re- 
form is  in  the  spirit  of  true  Christianity  that  has  risen  to  the  surface 
and  presages  the  deliverance  of  the  people  from  the  tyranny  of  Lib- 
eralism, capitalism  and  mammonism.  The  first  centenary  of  the 
Revolution  of  1889  will  therefore  witness  the  entombing  of  those 
ideas  which  then  saw  daylight,  and  the  resurrection  of  those  which, 
because  divine,  save  society  as  they  save  men. 

The  Canadian  Separate  School  System.  129 


THE  right  which  is  enjoyed  by  Cathoh'cs,  and  by  Protestants 
also,  in  parts  of  the  Dominion  of  Canada  respecting  the 
appropriation  of  their  own  taxes  to  the  support  of  their  own 
schools,  is  a  very  important  one  and  worthy  of  being  well  under- 
stood. It  is  a  concession,  a  privilege,  the  dominant  party  may 
say  ;  but  the  Catholics  acknowledge  it  simply  as  a  right,  as  a  legis- 
lative sanction  to  the  underlying  principles  of  true  education. 
They  contend  that  the  control  of  education  cannot  be  rightfully 
divorced  from  the  conscience  of  the  parent ;  that  the  State  with  no 
conscience  and  with  no  conception  of  religion  cannot  undertake  to 
impart  religious  instruction.  A  State  School  System,  like  an  Estab- 
lished Church,  has  certain  fascinations  for  the  man  in  office  as 
well  as  for  the  expectant  politician ;  it  affords  him  patronage,  it 
offers  him  a  chance  to  make  a  name  for  himself,  and  most  of  all 
it  gives  him  a  wonderful  grip  on  the  future  generation.  If  to  be 
the  founder  of  a  splendid  State  Church  is  likely  now  to  be  a  dream 
of  the  past,  there  remains  that  appurtenance  of  it,  a  State  School, 
which  is  hard  to  be  relinquished.  If  we  all  cannot  be  expected  to 
go  to  the  National  or  State  Church,  we  must  be  very  narrow  if  we 
object  to  go  to  the  National  School.  And  so  the  energies  of  those 
who  govern  us,  being  diverted  from  the  higher  course,  or  what 
they  deem  the  higher  course,  are  the  more  strongly  exerted  to- 
wards that  which  remains.  The  State  takes  up  education  as  the 
last  stronghold  of  Caesarism,  and  takes  it  up,  at  least  in  Canada, 
with  a  vengeance.  Every  one  must  be  well  educated  in  the  arts 
and  sciences ;  he  must  be  enabled  to  enter  the  universities ;  he 
must  learn  an  astonishing  number  of  things  whether  or  not  they 
will  ever  be  of  the  slightest  use  to  him.  The  mind  must  be  formed, 
the  intellect  must  be  trained.  And  so  we  have  public  schools, 
and  high  schools,  and  colleges^and  universities,  all,  except  a  few 
struggling  colleges,  supported  by  the  State,  and  presided  over  by 
-a  State  official.  The  intellectual  part  of  the  youth  being  provided 
for,  the  moral  training  does  not  seem  to  be  very  important.  It 
consists  chiefly  of  inserting  a  few  well-rounded  platitudes — Pagan 
or  Christian — wherever  they  could  be  conveniently  worked  in  with 
the  literary  selections  in  the  school  books.  But  religious  training 
is  necessarily  ignored.  Some  of  the  denominations,  following 
the  example  of  the  Catholics,  are  striving  to  educate  their  own  chil- 
dren in  their  own  way ;  but  their  efforts  are  discountenanced  and 
VOL.  XIV. — 9 

1^0  Amcricsin   Catholic  Quarterly  RevitW. 

they  work  under  great  disadvantages.  The  Juggernaut  of  the 
State  rides  over  them.  The  State  has  money,  and  the  appeal  for 
general  and  higher  educational  facilities  is  one  that  is  popular  and 
patriotic.  It  is  a  drawing  us  out  of  the  dark  ages,  it  is  enlighten- 
ment, it  is  the  progress  of  the  age.  But  there  is  no  appeal  for  a 
higher  or  indeed  any  sort  of  religious  training.  The  State  itself, 
having  no  religion  and  naturally  but  a  very  heterogeneous  con- 
ception of  it,  cannot  be  expected  to  teach  religion  any  more  than 
a  joint-stock  company  could  teach  it.  Its  whole  undisputed  the- 
ology may  be  comprised  in  less  than  a  page ;  and  so  it  would  not 
be  worth  while  attempting  to  formulate  any  doctrine.  A  few,  and 
these  not  "  glittering  generalities,"  must  suffice.  The  Atheist  and 
the  Unitarian,  the  High-Churchman  and  the  Methodist,  the  Inger- 
sollite  and  the  Catholic,  may  sit  down  at  the  common  council  of 
the  nation  and  come  to  a  conclusion  as  to  the  public  works  de- 
partment or  as  to  revenue,  but  they  cannot  make  much  headway 
with  religious  education,  or  even  with  highly  diluted  moral  instruc- 
tion in  the  schools.  They  wisely  gave  it  up,  protesting,  however, 
that  it  is  not  essential;  and  even  if  it  is,  that  it  is  sufficiently 
taught.  At  all  events,  whatever  lack  or  deficiency  there  is  in 
teaching  the  Divine  science,  there  is  a  creditable  overlap  on  the 
side  of  the  human. 

The  writer  is  not  concerned  with  the  public  or  other  State 
schools  except  in  so  far  that  they  do  not  and  cannot  afford  any 
guarantee  to  a  parent  of  the  religious  instruction  he  may  and 
ought  to  deem  necessary  for  his  child.  The  justness  of  this  to  all 
denominations  was  the  origin  of  the  Separate  School  System. 
That  system  is  not,  as  is  commonly  supposed,  even  in  Canada,  an 
exclusive  right  or  privilege  for  Catholics.  It  is  extended  to  Prot- 
estants as  well.  There  are  separate  schools  for  Protestants  and  for 
Catholics,  making  religious  belief  the  line  of  separation ;  and  sepa- 
rate schools  for  the  colored  people,  making  color  the  line  of  sepa- 
ration. The  law  is  a  little,  but  very  little,  in  favor  of  the  Catholic 
separate  schools;  as  will  be  seen  presently,  the  law  inclines  towards 
making  public  schools  the  vanishing  point  of  Protestant  separate 
schools.  There  are  very  few  of  thf^e  latter  schools,  for  obvious  rea- 
sons. It  is  rare  that  one  form  of  Protestantism  is  so  objectionable  to 
another  form  as  to  superinduce  an  estrangement  in  the  school-room ; 
it  is  rather  the  fashion  now  in  some  parts  of  Canada  for  the  differ- 
ent denominations  to  exchange  pulpits  on  a  Sunday.  The  week- 
day points  of  difference  may  be  set  down  as  a  very  slight  diver- 
gence. This  united  front,  or  almost  united  front,  of  Protestantism, 
sufficed  for  the  legislatures  in  times  gone  by  to  assume  that  there 
were  only  two  religions  so  far  as  matters  educational  went ;  and 
they  probably  foresaw  that  it  was  a  very  poor  specimen  of  a  Prot- 

The  Canadian  Separate  School  System.  i    j 

estant  that  would  not  fall  in  one  line  where  the  Catholics  were  all 
on  the  opposite  side. 

And  so,  though  it  is  convenient  at  times  to  rank  Catholics  with 
Methodists  and  Baptists  and  Anglicans  and  Presbyterians,  as  for 
instance,  representatives  in  public  offices  and  so  on,  yet  in  this  mat- 
ter of  schools  the  population  is  to  be  regarded  as  Protestant  and 
Catholic,  and  the  legislation  follows  that  supposition.  Leaving 
out  the  colored  schools  as  affording  no  special  feature  for  our  pur- 
pose, there  are  three  sorts  of  elementary  schools:  The  public 
school  of  no  religion,  the  Catholic  separate  schools,  and  the  Prot- 
estant separate  schools  for  their  churches  respectively.  The  first 
of  these  is  non-denominational,  the  other  two  are  denominational 
by  statute  law. 

The  law  as  it  now  stands,  for  instance  in  the  rather  Protestant 
province  of  Ontario,  is  the  result  of  a  good  many  hard-fought  bat- 
tles in  which  it  was  difficult  to  avoid  religious  strife.  It  would  be 
impossible  to  do  more  than  sketch  the  history  of  it  here,  and  even 
were  it  otherwise  it  is  not  a  pleasant  task.  The  reader  will  re- 
member that  when  the  French  province  of  Quebec  in  the  last  half 
of  the  last  century  changed  masters,  a  very  small  but  important 
stream  of  immigration  set  in  from  Great  Britain  and  Ireland.  These 
were  all  Protestants,  and  belonged,  of  course,  in  those  days,  to  the  Es- 
tablished Church.  They  avoided  the  eastern  province  and  generally 
came  and  settled  in  Western  Canada,  then  a  part  of  Quebec  prov- 
ince. In  1 79 1  the  Imperial  Parliament  of  Great  Britain  divided 
the  old  province  of  Quebec  into  Upper,  or  Western,  and  Lower,  or 
Eastern  Canada.  This  was  opposed  by  the  British  emigrants,  as 
it  left  some  of  them  powerless  among  the  French,  and  the  remain- 
der of  them  "hived"  in  Canada  West.  The  provinces  remained 
separated  for  fifty  years,  with  a  history  enlivened  by  a  couple  of 
rebellions  and  an  immense  amount  of  petty  tyranny.  The  British 
Act  of  1 79 1  (the  Canada  Bill)  set  apart  one-seventh  of  all  the  pub- 
lic land  for  the  support  and  maintenance  of  a  Protestant  clergy. 
This  was  the  famous  "  Clergy  Reserves,"  and  was  intended,  no 
doubt,  to  be  appropriated  as  endowments  for  rectories  of  the 
Church  of  England.  These  "Reserves"  comprised  about  two 
millions  of  acres  of  the  public  domain  of  Upper  Canada.  In  1819 
it  was  proposed  to  erect  an  Anglican  rectory  in  every  township ; 
further  instructions  came  about  seven  years  later  to  the  effect  that 
these  were  to  be  endowed  as  soon  as  erected.  The  royal  instruc- 
tions on  both  of  these  occasions  were  disregarded,  and  things  had 
come  to  such  a  pass  in  Church  of  England  affairs  that  neither  tithes 
could  be  collected  nor  rectories  endowed  in  Canada  at  that  time. 
All  the  other  denominations  were  arrayed  against  the  imperfectly 
established  Church,  but  the  Church  of  Scotland  outstripped  all 

132  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

other  opponents  and  proved  in  a  legal  way  that  she  was  as  much 
a  national  Church  as  ever  the  Church  of  England  had  been.  By  a 
decision  of  the  English  Crown  officers,  the  "  Reserves  "  were  de- 
clared to  be  equally  the  property  of  these  two  denominations.  In 
the  Act  of  Union  between  England  and  Scotland  "  the  true  Prot- 
estant religion  "  of  the  North  Britons,  though  differing  materially 
from  the  equally  true  Protestant  religion  of  their  southern  neigh- 
bors, was  "effectually  and  unalterably  secured  within  the  Kingdom 
of  Scotland."  So  the  Church  of  Scotland,  being  recognized  at 
home,  could  not  be  set  aside  abroad  where  a  slice  of  temporal  lands 
was  being  distributed  among  "  Protestant  clergy."  In  every  respect 
with  the  Church  of  England  the  Church  of  Rome  was  recognized 
before  the  law;  but  none  of  its  adherents  could  fairly  argue  that 
its  clergy  should  be  regarded  as  Protestant  So  they  were  shut 
out;  and  so  also,  in.  the  opinion  of  the  law  officers  of  the  Crown, 
were  all  dissenting  ministers. 

In  1 83 1  the  Imperial  Government  was  obliged  to  declare  its 
abandonment  of  the  "  Reserves,"  and  in  1839  an  Act  was  passed 
to  distribute  the  proceeds  of  these  lands  among  certain  religious 
denominations.  This  Act  was  never  put  into  operation.  It  was 
not  till  the  year  1854  that  the  question  was  finally  disposed  of.  A 
distribution  among  the  different  municipalities  was  then  author- 
ized. It  caa  be  well  imagined  that  discussions  might  arise  accord- 
ing as  the  municipalities  proceeded  to  dispose  of  the  money .^ 
They  could  apply  it  only  as  they  had  authority  to  apply  other 
moneys ;  and  at  a  distance  now  of  some  thirty  years  it  would  be 
hard  to  say  that  any  disposition  could  be  free  from  objection. 

The  feeling  engendered  by  these  Reserves  and  their  final  desti- 
nation might  easily  have  produced  denominational  schools.  The 
Canadas  were  in  a  sort  of  religious  ferment  for  half  a  century. 
There  were  at  least  two  hostile  camps.  As  things  subsided  the 
Church  of  England  lost  her  prestige  and  was  obliged  to  sit  down 
with  the  Dissenters,  and  with  such  National  Churchmen  as  are  to 
be  found  in  the  Kirks,  Finally  the  natural  and  proper  division 
came,  and  as  the  Catholics  stood  up  on  one  side,  the  Church  of  Eng- 
land and  the  others  all  joined  hands  on  the  other.  The  question 
of  separate  schools  was,  however,  agitated  long  before  the  "  Re- 
serves"  difficulty  had  settled  itself.  In  the  year  1 840  the  Eastern  and 
Western  Provinces  of  Canada  were  united  under  one  government. 
In  population  they  were  nearly  even  in  point  of  n^umbers ;  one  was 
British  and  Protestant,  the  other  was  Catholic  and  French.  Re- 
sponsible government,  such  as  at  present  prevails  in  England,  had 

1  See  the  controversy  between  the  Chief  Superintendent  of  Education  and  the 
Very  Rev.  (afterwards  Mgr.)  Bruyere  on  the  appropriation  of  the  Clergy  Reserve 

The  Canadian  Separate  School  Sjstem,  i^^ 

just  been  secured,  and  the  people  were  in  a  fair  way  towards  gov- 
erning themselves.  One  of  the  first  Acts  of  the  year  1841  was  a 
School  Law  by  which  in  rural  districts  separate  schools,  for  either 
Protestants  or  Catholics,  could  be  established;  in  cities  and  towns 
a  joint  board  of  trustees  was  supposed  to  be  able  to  manage  edu- 
cational affairs.  During  the  succeeding  ten  years  a  number  ot 
legislative  experiments  were  made;  in  1843  the  Act  was  repealed 
as  to  Western  Canada,  and  four  years  later  an  unsatisfactory  Act 
was  passed  which  in  its  turn  was  superseded  by  an  Act  of  the 
year  1849.  This  latter  one  was  never  put  in  force.  A  complete 
School  Law  was  enacted  in  1851,  but  it  was  not  for  two  years 
afterwards  that  the  basis  of  the  present  law  was  constructed,  nor 
till  the  year  1855  that  anything  satisfactory  was  reached.  In  the 
general  election  of  1857  ^^^  propriety  of  having  separate  schools 
was  one  of  the  chief  issues  at  the  polls,  and  the  result  was  that  the 
Catholic  party  from  Canada  East  was  in  a  position  to  rule  the 

The  Catholic  Separate  Schools  in  Western  Canada  numbered 
sixteen  in  the  year  185  i,  increasing  during  the  preceding  decade 
from  a  solitary  school  in  1841  to  the  number  mentioned.  In  the 
succeeding  decade,  or  rather  in  1862,  there  were  109  schools,  with 
an  attendance  of  13,631  pupils.  In  1863  the  law  was  settled,  such 
as  with  very  slight  modifications  it  exists  at  the  present  day. 
Under  the  Act  of  this  latter  year  it  was  provided : 

"  Any  number  of  persons,  not  less  than  five,  being  heads  of  families,  and  freeholders 
or  householders,  resident  without  any  school  section  of  any  township,  incorporated 
village,  or  town,  or  within  any  ward  of  any  city  or  town,  and  being  Roman  Catholics, 
may  convene  a  public  meeting  of  persons  desiring  to  establish  a  separate  school  for 
Roman  Catholics,  in  such  school  section  or  ward,  for  the  election  of  trustees  for  the 
management  of  the  same." 

The  trustees  so  elected  formed  a  body  corporate,  and  had  power 
to  enforce  and  collect  rates  and  contributions  towards  the  support 
of  the  school,  and  they  had  and  have  all  other  necessary  powers 
in  that  regard. 

The  Protestant  and  colored  separate  schools  are  now  brought 
into  existence  in  this  way : 

"  Upon  the  application  in  writing  of  five  or  more  heads  of  families  resident  in  any 
township,  city,  town,  or  incorporated  village,  being  Protestants,  the  Municipal  Coun- 
cil of  the  said  township,  or  the  Board  of  School  Trustees  of  any  such  city,  town,  or 
incorporated  village,  shall  authorize  the  establishment  therein  of  one  or  more  separate 

schools  for  Protestants  ; and  in   every  such  case,  such  council  Or  board,  as 

the  case  may  be,  shall  prescribe  the  limits  of  the  section  or  sections  of  such  schools."2 

1  Thomas  D'Arcy  M'Gee  was  returned  at  this  election. 

2  Originally,  in  regard  to  these  schools,  it  was  necessary  that  there  should  be  twelve 
applicants,  but  the  law  has  very  recently  been  changed.  There  are  only  half  a  dozen 
of  Protestant  separate  schools  in  Ontario  to-day. 

134  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

The  chief  point  of  difference  in  the  Protestant  and  Catholic 
schools  is  that  in  regard  to  the  former  there  is  this  clause : 

"  No  Protestant  separate  school  shall  be  allowed  in  any  school  section,  except  when 
the  teacher  of  the  public  school  in  such  section  is  a  Romap  Catholic." 

There  is  no  corresponding  clause  to  this  in  the  Act  as  regards 
the  Catholic  schools.  The  supporters  of  the  schools  have  to  re- 
side within  a  radius  of  three  miles  from  the  site  of  the  school- 
house,  otherwise,  if  not  so  situated,  they  can  attend  the  public 
schools.  So  long  as  the  separate  schools  exist  they  must  be  sup- 
ported by  those  desiring  to  support  them,  but  a  Catholic  can  with- 
draw his  support  and  allow  his  taxes  to  fall  into  the  public  schools. 

The  protection  which  the  Separate  School  Act  affords  is  of  two 
kinds :  it  exempts  from  the  public  school  tax  and  it  secures  a 
share  of  the  public  school  fund.  This  is  provided  for  by  two  sec- 
tions : 

"  Every  person  paying  rates,  whether  as  proprietor  or  tenant,  who,  by  himself  or 
his  agent,  on  or  before  the  first  day  of  March  in  any  year,  gives  to  the  clerk  of  the 
municipality  notice  in  writing  that  he  is  a  Roman  Catholic,  and  supporter  of  a  sepa- 
rate school  situated  in  the  said  municipality,  or  in  a  municipality  contiguous  thereto, 
shall  be  exempted  from  the  payment  of  all  rates  imposed  for  the  support  of  public 
schools,  and  of  public  school  libraries,  or  for  the  purchase  of  land  or  erection  of 
buildings  for  public  school  purposes,  within  the  city,  town,  incorporated  village,  or 
section,  in  which  he  resides,  for  the  then  current  year,  and  every  subsequent  year 
thereafter,  while  he  continues  a  supporter  of  a  separate  school ;  and  such  notice  shall 
not  be  required  to  be  renewed  annually." 

The  share  of  the  public  monies  devoted  to  education  is  reached 
in  this  way : 

"  Every  separate  school  shall  be  entitled  to  a  share  in  the  fund  annually  granted  by 
the  Legislature  of  this  Province  for  the  support  of  public  schools,  and  shall  be  en- 
titled also  to  a  share  in  all  other  public  grants,  investments  and  allotments  for  public 
school  purposes  now  made  or  hereafter  to  be  made  by  the  Province  or  the  municipal 
authorities,  according  to  the  average  number  of  pupils  attending  such  school  during 
the  twelve  next  preceding  months,  or.  during  the  number  of  months  which  may  have 
elapsed  from  the  establishment  of  a  new  separate  school,  as  compared  with  the  whole 
average  number  of  pupils  attending  school  in  the  same  city,  town,  village,  or  town- 
ship."— 26  v.,  c.  5,  s.  20. 

Taking  the  Province  of  Ontario  as  a  fair  example  of  the  work- 
ing of  a  denominational  elementary  school  system,  a  few  statistics 
may  be  of  some  value.  In  round  numbers  the  entire  population 
is  2,000,000;  the  population  between  the  ages  of  five  and  sixteen 
500,000.^     The  grand  total  of  schools  of  every  description  reaches 

1  The  exact  figures  in  the  last  census  were  1,913,460  as  the  entire  population,  with 
489,924  of  school  age.     Of  these  85,000  were  the  estimated  number  of  Catholics. 

The  Canadian  Separate  School  System,  135 

about  5300,  and  of  this  number  200  are  Roman  Catholic  separate 
schools.  The  entire  Catholic  population  is  between  one-fifth  and 
one-sixth  of  the  whole,  and  the  school  children  upwards  of  90,000. 
It  may  seem  extraordinary  that  there  are  not  8oo  or  900  schools 
for  them,  but  the  reason  is  obvious  enough.  In  the  report  of  sepa- 
rate schools  in  the  year  1881  the  Government  Inspector,  Mr.  J.  F. 
White,  says : 

"  In  school  are  laid,  in  great  part,  the  first  principles  of  the  child's  future  conduct, 
and  its  will,  heart,  conscience,  and  whole  character  formed.  There  it  is  taught  its 
duties,  of  which,  as  all  Christians  are  agreed,  the  moral  and  religious  are  the  most 
important.  Catholics  think,  further,  that  religion,  to  be  solid  and  effective,  must  be 
instilled  throughout  the  child's  entire  education.  Therefore,  content  with  no  mere 
secular  instruction,  and  believing  that  education  without  religion  is  impossible,  they 
asked  for  and  obtained  separate  schools  in  which  to  give  their  children  a  religious 
training.  In  many  instances  they  have  not  taken  advantage  of  the  privilege  thus 
conferred.  Frequently,  where  the  Catholic  ratepayers  are  greater  than,  or  equal  in 
number  to,  the  other  supporters,  no  effort  has  been  made  to  separate.  Again,  in  places 
where  nearly  all  the  population  is  Catholic,  as  in  French,  and  some  German,  settle- 
ments, there  exists  no  need  for  such  schools.  It  thus  happens  that  most  of  the 
Catholic  children  of  the  Province  receive  their  training  in  public  schools.  That  many 
of  the  latter  are,  in  their  character,  as  distinctively  Catholic  as  separate  schools  is 
shown  by  the  establishment,  in  some  sections,  of  Protestant  separate  schools 

«'  The  trustees'  returns  of  school  population  show  that  there  are  484,224  children  of 
school  age.  Of  these,  according  to  the  ratio  of  population,  at  least  85,000  are  Catho- 
lics. By  the  report  for  the  present  year,  the  number  attending  separate  schools  is 
24,767.  Allow  for  2000  at  colleges,  private  schools,  etc.,  and  for  non-attendance  at 
any  school  2  per  cent,  of  the  total  school  population,  the  remainder,  56,533  (two- 
thirds),  is  in  attendance  at  public  schools.  It  must  be  remembered  that  about  30,000 
of  these  attend  school  in  Catholic  settlements." 

In  the  Educational  Report  for  Ontario  for  the  year  1888  the 
progress  of  the  Catholic  separate  schools  for  the  preceding  ten 
years  is  given.  The  schools  increased  57  in  eleven  years,  and  the 
number  of  teachers  from  302  to  461.  The  Minister  of  Education, 
commenting  on  the  general  advancement,  says :  '*  It  will  be  seen 
that  the  separate  schools  are  steadily  prospering,  and  that  both  as 
regards  teachers  and  pupils  they  are  becoming  more  efficient  every 

Speaking  of  the  quality  of  education  imparted,  Mr.  White  says : 

"  The  work  of  the  separate  schools  is  much  the  same  in  character  as  that  done  in 
public  schools.  Frequently  it  is  assumed  that  the  education  given  in  the  former  is,  of 
necessity,  inferior  to  that  imparted  in  other  institutions.  Facts,  however,  will  not  bear 
out  this  assumption.  It  is  not  to  be  supposed  that  a  poor  and  sparsely  attended  school 
will  bear  comparison,  as  to  its  results,  with  a  wealthy  school  having  a  large  attend- 
ance. But,  where  the  conditions  have  been  at  all  equal  for  the  two  systems,  separate 
schools  show  results  in  no  way  inferior  to  those  of  the  public  schools.  The  mark  of 
inferiority  cannot  be  attached  to  such  schools  as  have,  year  after  year,  passed  pupils 
for  second  and  third  class  certificates,  and  whose  work,  in  a  few  cases,  compares 
favorably  with  that  of  some  high  schools." 

136  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

The  cost  of  pupils  to  the  rate-payer  is  shown  to  be  less,  and 
generally  a  good  deal  less,  to  the  separate  than  to  the  public  school 
supporter.     Here  is  the  cost  per  pupil  for  the  year  referred  to : 










Public  schools,      .... 
Separate  schools, .... 

It  will  be  seen  from  this  that,  while  in  rural  sections  the  cost  per 
pupil  is  much  the  same,  in  the  cities,  where  the  religious  orders 
do  the  work,  the  expenses  are  kept  nearly  one-half  lower  than  in 
the  public  schools.  Out  of  a  total  number  of  45 1  teachers,  248 
belonged  to  religious  communities. 

The  Catholic  children  of  the  Province  have  an  opportunity  in 
all  cases  of  going  to  their  own  schools,  and  if  their  fathers  and 
guardians  do  not  see  fit  to  separate  in  particular  localities,  it  is 
because  they  can  do  as  well  without  a  separation.  It  is  obvious 
that,  in  a  Catholic  settlement  with,  say,  half  a  dozen  Protestant 
neighbors,  it  would  be  a  disagreeable  proceeding  to  erect  a  school 
which  would  deprive  these  half  dozen  of  any  sort  of  school,  and 
would  be  controlled  exactly  the  same  as  if  there  were  no  such  thing 
as  separate  education.  Accordingly  in  settlements  where  the 
Catholics  can  control  the  school,  no  matter  what  it  may  be  called, 
they  allow  it  to  remain  open  to  the  minority  by  retaining  it  as  a 
public  school.  Where  in  thinly  settled  districts  it  is  a  hard  mat- 
ter to  maintain  one  school  efficiently,  it  is  often  a  subject  of  serious 
deliberation  to  both  pastor  and  people  whether  a  separation  is  or 
is  not  for  their  own  good.  In  cities  and  towns  good  separate 
schools  can  almost  always  be  counted  on  ;  in  villages  and  in  rural 
districts  the  chances  are  the  other  way.  If  you  have  a  thrifty,  com- 
pact settlement,  you  can  have  a  flourishing  school  anywhere  ;  it 
goes  without  saying  that  you  must  have  substantial  ratepayers 
within  a  reasonable  radius  before  you  can  attempt  a  separate  school. 

In  Ontario  the  Separate  School  system  extends,  practically,  only 
to  elementary  schools.  There  are  no  Separate  High  Schools,  no 
Separate  Collegiate  Institutes,  no  Separate  Colleges,  endowed  by 
the  people.  There  is  a  separation  in  the  primary  schools,  but  if  a 
pupil  wishes  to  get  a  higher  school  education,  he  must,  generally, 
fall  in  with  the  National  system.  The  High  Schools  receive  very 
substantial  support  from  the  Government,  and  they  can  count  on 
local  support,  public  and  private.  The  Provincial  University  is 
the  culmination  of  these  schools  and  colleges,  but  there  are  many 
other  universities,  though  chiefly  of  a  denominational  character. 
The  Education  Department  has  no  control  over  these,  but  it  con- 
trols and  supports  the  Provincial  University,  and  the  general 
school  system,  public  and  separate. 

The  Canadian  Separate  School  System.  137 

The  supervision  which  the  Educational  Department  has  a  right 
to  direct  over  separate  schools  is  of  a  very  negative  character.  The 
Chief  Superintendent,  or  the  Minister,  is  compelled  to  acknowl- 
edge them,  but  he  does  very  little  besides.  The  regulations  which 
can  be  prescribed  are  not  of  a  very  vital  character ;  indeed,  the 
Legislature  itself  is  precluded  from  prejudicially  affecting  the 
school  law.  Separate  schools  existed  for  a  good  many  years  prior 
to  the  Confederation  in  1867.  In  that  year  four  of  the  British 
Provinces  cast  in  their  lot  together  as  a  small  Federal  Union  some- 
what in  the  nature  of  the  American  Union.  Two  of  them,  the 
Canadas,  had  separate  or  denominational  schools,  and  the  Catho- 
lic delegates  at  the  Conference  for  the  Union  looked  after  the 
Catholic  minority  in  Western  Canada,  whilst  the  Protestant  dele- 
gates were  equally  anxious  for  the  Protestants  living  among  the 
French  Canadians.  The  result  was,  both  minorities  were  protected 
against  future  invasion  of  their  school  laws.  The  Act  which 
united  the  Canadas  and  the  other  two  Provinces  was  an  Imperial 
Act,^  and  its  guarantees  cannot  be  disturbed  unless  by  a  repealing 
Act  of  the  Imperial  Parliament. 

The  clause  in  the  Imperial  Act  is  as  follows : 

93.  In  and  for  each  Province  the  I>egislature  may  exclusively  make  laws  in  rela- 
tion to  Education,  subject  and  according  to  the  foUovi^ing  provisions  : 

(l.)  Nothing  in  any  such  law  shall  prejudicially  affect  any  right  or  privilege  with 
respect  to  denominational  schools  which  any  class  of  persons  have  by  law  in  the 
Province  of  the  Union.     [1867.] 

(2.)  All  the  powers,  privileges  and  duties  at  the  Union  by  law  conferred  and  im- 
posed in  Upper  Canada  on  the  separate  schools  and  school  trustees  of  the  Queen's 
Roman  Catholic  subjects  shall  b^and  the  same  are  hereby  extended  to  the  dissentient 
schools  of  the  Queen's  Protestant  and  Roman  Catholic  subjects  in  Quebec. 

(3.)  Where  in  any  Province  a  system  of  separate  or  dissentient  schools  exists  by 
law  at  the  Union  or  is  thereafter  established  by  the  Legislature  of  the  Province,  an 
appeal  shall  lie  to  the  Governor-General  in  Council  from  any  Act  or  decision  of  any 
Provincial  authority  affecting  any  right  or  privilege  of  the  Protestant  or  Roman 
Catholic  minority  of  the  Queen's  subjects  in  relation  to  Education. 

(4.)  In  case  any  such  Provincial  law  as  from  time  to  time  seems  to  the  Governor- 
General  in  Council  requisite  for  the  due  execution  of  the  provisions  of  this  section  is 
not  made,  or  in  case  any  decision  of  the  Governor- General  in  Council  on  any  appeal 
under  this  section  is  not  duly  executed  by  the  proper  Provincial  authority  in  that  be- 
half, then  and  in  every  such  case,  and  as  far  only  as  the  circumstances  of  each  case 
require,  the  Parliament  of  Canada  may  make  remedial  laws  for  the  due  execution  of 
the  provisions  of  this  section  and  of  any  decision  of  the  Governor-General  in  Council 
under  this  section. 

It  will  be  seen  from  this  how  safe  the  Separate  School  Law  is  from 
any  local   encroachment.'     It  stands  with  the  Canadian  Constitu- 

1  30  and  31  Vic,  cap.  3. 

»  Ordinarily  in  Canada  if  a  Provincial  Act  is  beyond  the  competency  of  its  Legisla- 
ture,  or  ultra  vires,  it  is  vetoed  by  the  Central  Government  at  Ottawa ;  but  if  such  Act 
refer  to  these  schools,  it  is  not  disallowed  in  that  way,  but  is  dealt  with  as  an  appeal 

138  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

tion,  but  it  may  fall  with  it.  It  is  unaffected  by  local  agitation  or 
by  local  legislation  in  the  Province,  though  it  may  be,  and  has 
been,  amended  at  the  instance  of  the  proper  authorities.  Being  a 
law  for  a  "  denomination,"  to  use  the  word  of  the  statute,  no  gov- 
ernment would  proceed  to  enact  any  amendment  to  it  unless  at 
the  request  of  the  heads  of  that  denomination.  This  secures  the 
law  from  any  hasty  or  ill-considered  changes,  and  leaves  to  the 
ecclesiastical  authorities  the  proper  guidance  in  educational  ^ffairs. 


''  It  is  a  most  salutary  thing,  under  this  temptation  to  self-conceit,  to  be  reminded 
that  in  all  the  highest  qualifications  of  human  excellence  we  have  been  far  outdone  by 
men  who  lived  centuries  ago." — Card,  Newman. 

"  Vielen  gefallen  ist  schlimm." — Schiller. 

IT  may  sound  a  little  cruel,  but  there  is  no  answer  more  effective 
and  oftentimes  more  truly  kind  than  to  beg  a  too  voluble 
questioner  to  state  his  difficulty.  It  is  a  veritable  red  rag  to  him. 
Has  he  not  been  stating  his  difficulty  for  the  last  half  hour?  and 
now  he  is  coolly  requested,  not  to  restadb  it — that  might  be  con- 
strued as  a  compliment — but  simply  to  make  himself  intelligible. 
"Where's  your  difficulty?"  is  one  of  the  most  exasperating  things 
that  can  be  said,  especially  when  accompanied  with  a  certain  in- 
flection of  voice.  For  the  moment  the  position  of  the  person  con- 
sulted is  forgotten  in  the  greatness  of  the  snub.  Resentment 
blinds  us  to  the  reasonableness  of  his  request;  and  even  though 
light  were  given  us  to  see  this  much,  it  is  doubtful  whether  our 
will  would  comply.  Some,  indeed,  try  to  seem  at  their  ease  and 
laugh  it  off,  but  a  tell-tale  flush  overspreads  their  face,  and  in  the 
look  with  which  they  regard  the  ancient  man,  those  qualities  of 
reverence  and  love  so  much  recommended  to  youth  are  conspicu- 
ously absent.  If  wise  and  sufficiently  heroic,  the  young  man  will 
pause  a  moment  to  rally  from  the  rebuff,  but  if  neither  wise  nor 
heroic,  his  alleged  difficulty  will  be  reiterated  with  the  added 

to  the  Governor-General.  The  difference  may  be  important  in  one  respect,  as  the  par- 
ties affected  could  be  heard  on  the  appeal ;  the  disallowance  is  a  ministerial  act  of  the 
Privy  Council  of  Canada,  and  is  done  in  the  secret  way  in  which  all  such  acts  are 

The  So-called  Problem  of  Evil — A  Protest.  \  20 

velocity  and  lessened  lucidity  due  to  vexation,  and  the  old  man 
must  continue  to  listen,  though  still  unable  to  follow. 

There  is  another  form  of  trial  to  which  a  youth  with  difificulties 
is  liable.  He  may  have  worked  very  hard  at  some  problem  and 
come  to  the  conclusion  that  it  is  insoluble,  a  very  satisfactory  con- 
clusion at  times  to  come  to.  It  is  a  mistake  to  suppose  that  the 
mind  can  find  gratification  only  in  the  discovery  of  the  powers  it 
possesses.  Now-a-days  at  least,  men  grow  almost  hilarious  over 
the  discovery  of  their  incapacity  for  truth.  They  are  delighted  to 
prove  to  themselves  and  others  that  all  of  us  are  very  small  indeed. 
They  grow  wroth  over  the  old  Ptolemaic  system,  were  it  only 
because  it  unduly  exalted  man's  position  in  the  physical  world.^ 
In  their  self-depreciation  they  turn  admiringly  to  physical  law  and 
offer  it  a  place  above  the  thing  called  mind,  which  they  regard  suspi- 
ciously and  praise  grudgingly.  They  love  darkness  and  the  lowest 
place,  and  are  proud  to  admit  that  they  are  in  it.  Into  the  causes  of 
this  strange  parody  of  humility  we  cannot  now  enter.  We  only 
observe  in  passing  the  curious  fact  that  never  before  in  the  history 
of  the  world  was  man  made  so  much  of  as  the  centre  of  the  uni- 
verse of  God.^  Our  student,  then,  with  the  problem  is  in  the  above 
happy  frame  of  mind.  He  has  found  the  insoluble  something  that 
baffles  his  mind,  and  therefore  the  minds  of  all  men,  and  so  far  he 
is  satisfied.  For  such  a  one  there  may  be  a  terrible  shock  in  store. 
If  the  grave  old  man  of  our  first  parable  be  consulted,  it  is  just  pos- 
sible that  he  will  remark  :  "  Of  couse  it  can  be  solved.  It  has  been 
solved  scores  of  times.  Let  me  show  you."  The  words  may  be 
spoken  innocently,  but  they  rankle  deeply.  The  slightest  discov- 
erer, if  he  be  attached  to  his  own  opinion,  as  some  discoverers  are, 
will  reason  somewhat  after  this  fashion :  My  mind  has  been  given 
to  that  problem  as  no  other  mind  ever  was.  I  have  pronounced 
it  to  be  insoluble.  It  is  insoluble,  and  no  one  has  a  right  to  im- 
agine that  he  or  anybody  else  has  solved  it.  Don't  tell  me  the 
thing  has  been  done.     It  never  was  and  never  can  be. 

This  picture  may  give  some  idea  of  the  reluctance  with  which  we 
approach  one  of  the  so-called  insoluble  problems.  One  is  pretty 
sure  to  give  offence  by  calling  it  comparatively  easy,  or  even  by  hint- 
ing that  it  is  in  a  very  great  measure  solved.  Yet  with  all  the  good 
will  in  the  world,  we  cannot  but  think  that  it  is  so.  In  the  face  of 
the  irresistible  force  of  the  reasoning  of  a  St.  Augustine  and  a  St. 
Thomas,  it  would  be  the  merest  hypocrisy  to  acquiesce  in  the  epi- 

1  Man's  place  in  the  physical  world  is  treated  by  St.  Thomas  in  the  spirit  of  the 
true  Rationalist.  "  Multo  plus  excedit  Anima  Rationalis  corpora  caelestia  quam 
ipsa  excedunt  corpus  humanum.  Unde  non  est  inconveniens  si  .corpora  ccelestia 
propter  hominem  esse  facta  dicantur,  non  tamen  sicut  propter  principalem  finem." 
Suppl.  ad  Sum  mam,  Quest.  91,  3. 

»  For  a  lamentable  proof  of  this,  see  Archdeacon  Farrar's  work,  Eternal  Hope. 

140  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

thets  that  are  designed  to  convey  the  stupendousness  and  in- 
solubility of  the  problem.  It  may  be  so  in  a  sense  not  at  all  con- 
templated by  the  users  of  these  big  words — this  sense  we  may 
have  to  consider  later — but  in  the  meaning  intended  by  modern 
writers  it  is  neither  stupendous  nor  insoluble.  What  Dr.  Marti- 
neau  says  of  the  youths  who,  thanks  to  Darwin,  are  not  going  to 
be  caught  in  the  trap  of"  Final  Causes,"  and  must  have  their  fling 
at  Paley  and  the  Bridgewater  treatises,  we  may  be  permitted  to  say 
in  an  applied  form  of  most  of  those  who  bandy  about  the  phrase, 
the  Problem  of  Evil.  Dr.  Martineau  writes  ("  A  Study  of  Relig- 
ion." Preface)  :^  "It  is  probable  that  of  those  who  speak  in  this 
way  nine  out  of  ten  have  never  read  the  books  with  which  they 
deal  so  flippantly."  We,  on  the  other  hand,  shall  not  be  far  below 
the  mark  if  we  put  the  proportion  of  those  who  have  any  clear 
understanding  of  the  real  meaning  of  the  hackneyed  phrase, 
problem  of  evil,  at  one  in  a  thousand.  One  book,  which  will 
have  to  be  mentioned  again,  has  just  been  published,  bearing  that 
very  name.  The  author,  Mr.  Greenleaf  Thompson,  might  as 
well  have  called  it  ^'Problems  in  Mechanics"  for  all  the  rele- 
vancy of  the  argument.  Early  in  the  book  (p.  26)  he  says  the 
problem  is  quite  insoluble,  and  abandons  the  attempt  accord- 
ingly. Yet  the  book  goes  on  for  250  pages  more.  The  two 
Mills  ^  were  too  overcome  by  their  aimless  indignation  against 
an  imaginary  God  to  bequeath  us  any  contributions  of  value  on 
the  subject  of  evil,  physical  or  moral,  and  the  literary  sentimen- 
tality of  Archdeacon  Farrar  is  equally  barren  of  results.^ 

1  Probably  nowhere  in  the  whole  range  of  English  philosophy  will  be  found  such 
a  masterly  solution  of  some  modern  difficulties  concerning  evil  as  in  the  pages  of  Dr. 
Martineau  {Ibid.,  vol.  2,  c.  3).  We  had  intended  giving  some  extracts,  but  it  would  be 
difficult  to  make  a  selection  from  a  chapter  which,  for  a  combination  of  subtlety  of 
thought,  brilliancy  of  diction  and  playful  fancy,  is  one  of  the  masterpieces  of  recent 
literature.  The  author  unconsciously,  it  would  seem,  applies  many  principles  of  St. 
Augustine  and  St.  Thomas,  and  thus  adds  vastly  to  their  practical  force.  A  study  of 
these  principles,  coupled  with  an  application  of  them  under  the  able  guidance  of  Dr. 
Martineau,  will  be  found  to  fortify  the  true  philosophy  of  evil  against  any  possible 
attack.  We  may  add  that  Dr.  Martineau  strongly  deprecates  the  passionate  and  foolish 
spirit  in  which  the  problem  is  so  often  approached. 

Like  Dugald  Stewart,  he  is  quite  ready  to  admit  that  the  problem  is  by  no  means 
as  difficult  as  it  is  represented. 

One  slightly  adverse  criticism  may  be  offered.  The  large  space  devoted  by  Dr. 
Martineau  to  the  treatment  of  animal  pain  seems  altogether  disproportionate.  How- 
ever, it  may  be  said  that  modern  Humanitarianism  rendered  it  necessary. 

2  Autobiography  of  J.  S.  Mill,  p.  41. 

'  In  Eternal  Hope,  Serm.  3,  Archdeacon  Farrar,  evidently  under  the  influence  of 
excitement,  which  seems  not  to  have  subsided  between  the  preaching  of  the  sermon 
and  the  publication  of  the  book,  thus  expresses  himself:  "  St.  Thomas  lent  his  saintly 
name  to  what  I  can  only  call  the  abominable  fancy,"  etc.,  etc.  Neither  St.  Thomas's 
saintliness  nor  fancy  is  here  in  the  least  concerned,  only  his  logic.     His  particular 

The  So-called  Problem  of  Evil — A  Protest.  \a\ 

A  famous  stanza  of  Tennyson's  is  perhaps  the  very  best  illus- 
tration of  the  wild  obscurity  with  which  modern  philosophy  has 
surrounded  this  question  as  though  to  make  examination  impos- 
sible. Compressed  into  four  lines  by  the  poet's  marvellous  power, 
the  very  essence  of  modern  thought  on  a  momentous  subject 
stands  revealed.  Words  like  these  have  probably  done  as  much 
to  foster  a  false  philosophy  of  evil  as  Shakespeare's  plea  for  the 
beetle  and  its  pangs  has  done  for  a  false  Humanitarianism : 

[He]  thought  that  God  was  love  indeed. 

And  love  Creation's  only  law,  ' 

While  Nature,  red  in  tooth  and  claw 
With  ravin,  shrieked  against  his  creed, 

A  few  remarks  on  this  may  be  subjoined. 

There  is  a  voice  heard  above  the  shriek  of  Lord  Tennyson's 
Nature — for  we  cannot  believe  that  it  is  Nature  herself,  so  sweet  and 
stately — and  that  is  the  loud  protest  of  the  Philosophy  of  Religion 
and  Common  Sense. 

Compare  the  poet  of  the  103d  Psalm  and  judge,  not  only  whose 
is  the  saner  philosophy,  but  whose  the  truer  art.  "  Thou  waterest 
the  hills  from  thy  upper  rooms,  the  earth  shall  be  filled  with  the 
fruit  of  thy  words,  bringing  forth  grass  for  cattle  and  herb  for  the 
service  of  man,  that  thou  mayest  bring  bread  out  of  the  earth  and 
that  wine  may  cheer  the  heart  of  man.  .  .  .  Thou  hast  appointed 
darkness  and  it  is  night ;  in  it  shall  all  the  bears  of  the  forest  roam, 
young  lions  roaring  after  their  prey  and  seeking  their  meat  from 

And  next  hear  Common  Sense.  "  The  life  of  the  lion,"  says  St. 
Thomas  in  his  robust  way,  *'  could  not  be  preserved  but  by  the 
killing  of  the  ass"  (Summa,  Pars  i.,  48,  2);  and  again:  "Some 
would  say  that  the  nature  of  fire  was  bad,  because  it  burned  the 
house  of  some  poor  man."  This  strange  opinion,  as  he  calls  it,  he 
attributes  to  the  "  Ancients,"  "because  they  did  not  consider  uni- 
versal causes,  but  only  particular  causes  of  particular  events" 
(Ibid.,  Pars  i.,  49,  2). 

The  whirligig  of  time,  indeed,  brings  round  its  revenges,  and 
Lord  Tennyson,  the  representative  of  our  highly-evolved  selves, 
must  be  classed  under  the  now  slightly  opprobrious  name  of 
"  Ancients." 

conclusion  about  lost  souls  is  infallibly  deduced  from  premises  which  Archdeacon 
Farrar  himself  must  grant. 

Mr,  Leckey's  mode  of  attack  on  the  same  passage  is — 

(1)  To  quote  only  two  lines. 

(2)  To  mutilate  these  two  lines. 

(3)  To  print  five  words  of  these  two  mutilated  lines  in  capitals  of  horror  {Hist. 
Rationalism,  2d  ed.,  vol.  i.,  p.  350). 

ij^2  American  Catholic  Quarter Ly  Review, 

Another,  perhaps  it  might  be  called  a  lower,  form  of  common 
sense  has  still  to  make  its  reckoning  with  Lord  Tennyson.  It 
asks :  Do  you  or  do  you  not  do  wrong  in  ordering  a  red-handed 
butcher  to  kill  your  meat?  Do  you  not  make  Nature  shriek? 
We  think  that  nature  (with  a  small  n)  would  shriek  louder  if  the 
"bleeding  business"  were  not  done. 

But  it  is  not  from  writers  of  books  or  poetry  that  the  modern 
spirit  is  best  caught.  The  heterogeneous  mass  of  literature  that 
is  ever  falling  from  a  glutted  press  on  a  glutted  world  is  better  for 
the  purpose.  It  is  from  newspapers  and  periodicals,  supplemented 
by  the  information  gained  from  odds  and  ends  of  discussion,  shakes 
of  the  head,  smiles  of  disbelief  and  sighs  over  life,  that  we  come 
to  form  a  very  true  estimate  of  popular  views  of  evil.  Judging  by 
these  criteria,  the  demand  for  articles  that  can  in  some  way  or  an- 
other be  called  problems,  with  a  dash  of  evil  in  them,  is  going 
briskly  on.  To  minds  capable  of  anything  like  ultimate  analysis, 
they  are  reducible  to  a  very  few — witness  the  ceaseless  and  wholly 
unnecessary  multiplication  of  so-called  religious  problems — but 
the  multifarious  ways  of  describing  them,  and  the  colors  in  which 
modern  literature  revels,  give  them  an  air  of  reality  to  which  they 
have  no  intrinsic  title. 

All  the  metaphorical  resources  of  the  English  language — that 
most  untruthful  instrument  of  the  most  truthful  race  under  the  sun 
— are  exhausted  in  the  attempt  to  portray  the  strange  manners  and 
customs  of  problems.  We  have  Problems  Religious,  Philosophi- 
cal, Scientific,  Social,  Economic,  and,  dreadful  to  say,  Comic  or 
Comical  Problems  ;  Problems  that  confront  us  like  sturdy  beggars 
— Problems  that  demand  solution,  that  menace,  that  haunt,  that 
bewilder,  that  overpower,  that  make  life  unendurable  (so  it  is  said), 
that  assume  every  shape  and  form  and  monstrous  feature,  perplex- 
ing, importunate,  complicated,  hopeless,  insoluble  Problems — and 
the  greatest  of  them  all  is  Evil. 

There  is  a  language  of  problems  growing  up  apace,  and  lamen- 
tations over  the  "hideous  enigmas"  of  life  bid  fair  to  generate  a 
literary  screaminess  and  philosophical  slang.  After  all,  apart 
from  shams  and  phrases,  the  world  is  luminous  still,  with  the  sim- 
plicity and  symmetry  of  God's  handiwork.  The  darkness  over 
it  is  but  necessary  and  •  bountiful ;  it  is  necessary  as  the  conse- 
quence of  our  limited  being.  Were  the  world  all  light  to  us,  the 
world  were  miserably  little.  And  the  darkness  is  bountiful  as  the 
occasion  of  the  nobility  of  self  surrender,  the  heroism  of  suffering 
and  the  divinity  of  compassion.  Hideousness  there  is,  but  this 
is  not  part  of  the  darkness ;  it  is  part  of  the  very  distinct  and  pal- 
pable reality  of  human  sin.  Wild  invective  confounds  this  harm- 
less darkness  with  this  hideous  sin,  until  the  world  begins  to  think 

The  So-called  Problem  of  Evil— A  Protest.  14^ 

itself  grievously  ill-used  at  the  hands  of  God.  At  this  point  undis- 
ciplined speculation  and  unchastened  language  rush  blindly  in,  and 
thrust  aside  the  realities  of  life,  and  the  world  becomes  far  more 
unhappy  because  of  its  man-made  theories  than  because  of  its  God- 
made  facts. 

After  such  a  Babel,  no  wonder  that  the  tones  from  the  past  are 
welcome,  for  they  are  low  and  mellow  and  sweet  to  the  jangling 
that  vexes  ear  and  spirit,  but  they  are  too  gentle  to  drown  it,  and 
Shakespeare  may  sing  and  St.  Thomas  teach  unheard : 

"  There  is  a  soul  of  goodness  in  things  evil, 
Would  man  observingly  distil  it  out." 

"  Respondeo  dicendum  quod  malum  non  potest  esse  nisi  in  bono,  .  .  .  Respondeo 
dicendum  quod  causa  mali  est  bonum.  .  .  .  Respondeo  dicendum  quod  Deus  causando 
bonum  ordinis  universi,  ex  consequenti  et  quasi  per  accidens  ^  causat  corruptiones 
rerum."  2 

We  fail,  as  we  said,  to  sympathize  with  the  language  used  about 
this  so-called  terrible  problem.  It  sounds,  in  too  many  cases,  loose, 
extravagant  and  hollow.  The  questions,  Where  is  your  difficulty? 
Has  it  not  been  in  great  measure  solved  ?  rise  to  one's  lips.  We 
know,  of  course,  the  penalty  that  is  attached  to  the  utterance  of  an 
opinion  somewhat  adverse  to  the  age's  idea  of  itself.  The  gently 
abusive  powers  of  modern  English — one  would  rather  fall  under 
the  good  old  knock-him-on-the-head  style  of  criticism — are  put  in 
requisition  against  the  man  who  cannot  feel,  as  it  is  said,  with  the 
age.  He  is  out  of  touch  with  the  modern  spirit,  incapable  of  see- 
ing two  sides  to  a  question,  blind  to  the  signs  of  the  times,  deaf  to 
the  cry  of  struggling  humanity,  his  altruistic  growth  stunted,  and 
one  side  of  his  nature  uncultivated.  Alas,  alas!  Why  will  not 
these  accusers,  replete  with  these  phrases  and  flouts,  "  deafened 
with  the  clamor  of  their  own  dear  groans,"  remember  that  we 
are  debtors  not  only  to  the  generation  in  which  we  live,  but 
also  to  the  minds  of  the  thinkers  of  old?  We  have  obliga- 
tions to  both.  We  are  not  free  to  treat  the  dead  ill  because  they 
will  not  feel  it.  They  indeed  are  beyond  the  reach  of  injustice 
and  the  chill  of  neglect,  and  it  is  well ;  for  there  where  they  fought 
on  the  sacred  battlefield  of  truth,  a  noisy  crowd  of  gasconaders  and 
philosophers  is  swarming,  at  one  moment  glorying  over  their  com- 
paratively petty  conquests — those  over  matter — at  the  next  cower- 
ing before  shadowy  armies  of  mental  problems,  inviting  them  to 
approach,  then  growing  hysterical,  turning  and  flying,  contemptu- 
ously ignorant  of  the  deeds   of  those  who  stood  there  once,  not 

1  Aristotle's  Kara  ,rvix^spnic6i.  English  helpless  here.  Perhaps  primarily  uninten- 
tioned  gives  something  of  the  idea. 

2  Summa,  1.  c,  and  the  Quyestio  de  Malo  among  the  Quaestiones  Disputatas. 

144  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Reviezv. 

humble  or  wise  enough  to  go  to  Augustine's  "  Confessions,"  that 
miracle  of  thought  and  tears,  and  cry  out  with  him,  ''  Quaerebam 
unde  malum  et  male  quaerebam,"^  but  supremely  satisfied  with 
themselves,  insensible  to  the  influence  and  uninspired  by  the  voices 
of  the  mighty  past.  The  clear  and  fearless  gaze  that  in  the  old 
days  of  the  combat  of  thought  used  to  dispel  the  gloom  is  grow- 
ing dim,  and  the  strong  grasp  that  once  wrung  its  worst  terrors 
from  mystery  is  relaxed.  "  We  have  lost  something  in  our  pro- 
gress," are  the  closing  words  of  Mr.  Lecky's  great  work,  but  they 
are  not  sad  enough.  We  have  lost  the  great  bulk  of  the  science 
of  life,  philosophy. 

And  there  would  seem  to  be  little  prospect  in  our  days  of  any 
general  effort  to  recover  lost  ground,  or  of  anything  like  a  success- 
ful solution  of  even  an  ordinary  philosophical  problem.  In  a  pro- 
gressive age  we  make  no  progress  in  philosophy. 

It  will  be  enough  to  give  only  one  reason  out  of  many  for  this 
rather  gloomy  view.  It  may  be  stated  thus :  Protracted  logical 
reasoning  and  deep  disciplined  thought  have  become  to  the 
modern  mind  almost  a  physical  impossibility,  or  at  least  our  re- 
pugnance to  such  processes  is  almost  insuperable. 

This  reason  will  seem  a  matter  of  rejoicing  to  those  who  derive 
their  ideas  of  the  logical  characteristics  of  the  old  philosophy  from 
writers  who,  to  the  delight  of  the  vulgar  taste,  persist  in  identify- 
ing logic  with  verbal  jugglery.  Taken  in  this  sense,  logic,  of 
course,  connotes  a  low  condition  of  intellect ;  and  in  this  same 
sense  many  pages  out  of  the  old  philosophers  may  be  said  to  be 
disfigured.  But  such  a  state  of  things  never  was  the  rule  in  the 
great  authors,  but  the  exception.  As  well  might  one  say  that  the 
average  of  Stoic  teaching  was  fairly  represented  by  a  syllogism 
once  discussed  in  their  schools :  You  have  that  which  you  have 
not  lost.  But  you  have  not  lost  horns.  Therefore,  you  have 
horns.  The  staple  of  the  great  Christian  peripatetics  was  sound 
and  solid  thought.  The  subject-matter  of  the  thought  may  or 
may  not  commend  itself  to  modern  ideas,  and  we  are  far  from  say- 
ing that  it  would  be  desirable  for  us  to  devote  our  thought  to  ex- 
actly the  same  points.  That  is  not  the  question.  The  question 
is :  Was  there  immense  power  of  thought  in  these  men,  and  if  so, 
do  we  bestow  on  the  subject-matter  that  we  prefer  any  thought 
like  it?  Do  we?  For  some  such  thought,  it  must  be  borne  in 
mind,  is  necessary  for  the  attainment  of  any  philosophical  truth. 
To  this  question  it  is  hardly  necessary  to  say  that  no  answer  can 
be  returned,  unless  the  answerer  has  read  something  of  the  two 
schools  which  he  proposes  to  compare.     With  this  proviso,  there 

1  As  a  Manichgean.     Confessions  vii.  ;. 

The  So-called  Problem  of  Evil— A  Protest  \At 

can  be  no  mariner  of  doubt  as  to  the  result  of  the  contrast.  It 
would  be  well  if,  instead  of  dwelling  on  the  remarkable  facility  we 
undoubtedly  possess  of  transporting  ourselves  to  ages  long  dead 
and  of  feeling  to  a  great  extent  with  them,  we  should  sometimes 
vary  the  process  and  call  these  other  ages  from  the  tomb  and  bid 
them  live  with  and  remark  on  us.  We  think,  for  instance,  a  re- 
suscitated St.  Thomas  would  soon  master  many  modern  problems, 
and  at  the  sight  of  our  decadence  in  the  reasoning  powers  that  he 
once  found  and  stimulated  in  the  educational  centres  of  Europe, 
we  doubt  not  that  he  would  stand  aghast.  There  is  no  other  word 
for  it. 

Suppose  he  were  told  that  eminent  men  of  the  nineteenth  cen- 
tury expressed  in  print  their  doubts  as  to  the  sum  of  2  +  2  in 
another  planet,  how  should  he  not  feel  aghast  ?  And  in  so  feeling, 
would  he  be  right  or  would  he  be  wrong?  Is  it  by  reason  of  the 
prejudices  of  his  old-world  education,  or  because  of  his  insight 
into  everlasting  truth,  that  the  mediaeval  philosopher  would  be 
thus  very  literally  shocked  ?  The  question  must  be  capable  of  an 

Or  let  him  be  informed  that  the  immense  progress  of  science,  of 
which  we  are  justly  proud,  is  stated  on  many  hands  to  have  nec- 
essarily impaired  belief  in  the  very  existence  of  God — for,  stripped 
of  all  ambiguities,  this  is  the  naked  assertion  of  multitudes.  He 
would  probably  rather  disbelieve  his  informant  than  imagine  for 
a  moment  that  the  educated  and  cultured  human  mind  could  pos- 
sibly have  fallen  so  low.  Even  when  he  came  to  realize  it,  how 
could  he,  by  dint  of  strict  reasoning,  argue  the  world  into  reason 
again  ?  He  could  not,  for  strict  argument,  to  be  efficacious,  sup- 
poses a  considerable  amount  of  pre-existent  reasonableness.  All 
he  could  do  would  be  to  suggest  some  simile  or  metaphor  suited 
to  the  tastes  and  capacities  of  the  age.  He  might  observe,  for  in- 
stance, that  though  the  childish  idea  was  exploded,  that  the  noise 
in  the  sea-shell  held  close  to  the  ear  was  the  distant  roar  of  the 
sea,  still  the  existence  of  the  sea  was  not  thereby  imperilled,  nor 
the  necessity  of  its  waters  for  the  life  of  fish  lessened.  Neither 
was  God's  existence  made  more  doubtful,  no  matter  what  the  dis- 
covery that  falsified  old  unscientific  notions  on  any  physical  fact 
in  the  whole  physical  word  ;  nor  was  the  necessity  of  His  exist- 
ence as  the  ultimate  explanation  of  all  life  and  being  diminished. 

This  is  all,  perhaps,  that  even  St.  Thomas  could  do. 

The  higher  processes  of  thought — let  us  call  them  by  their  right 
name,  the  metaphysical — are  closed  against  him,  owing  to  the 
mental  conditions  of  his  hearers.  For  the  solution  of  strictly 
philosophical  problems  it  seems  to  me  that  the  modern  mind  is  as 
ill-fitted  as  the  mind  of  any  previous  epoch  ever  was,  while,  com- 
VOL.  XIV. — 10 

1^6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

pared  with  several  ages  of  the  past,  which  we  are  ignorant  enough 
to  decry  or  presumptuous  enough  to  patronize,  we  aptly  illustrate 
on  these  points  the  second  childhood  of  the  world.  Over  and 
over  ao-ain,  we  honestly  fail  to  see  in  pretentious  books  the  veriest 
sophisms  that  ever  were  penned — (pavepurara  hlV  ohx  i-jfuv.  One 
would  think  that  we  were  incapable  of  taking  the  two  or  three 
steps  that  would  often  be  sufficient  to  lead  us  to  first  princi- 
ples. Mr.  Lecky,  for  instance,  the  very  highest  type  we  possess 
of  a  philosophical  historian  and  masterly  writer,  has  repeatedly 
stated,  both  in  his  Rationalism  and  European  Morals,  that  the  gen- 
eral disbelief  in  miracles  is  not  founded  on  reason,  and  yet  is  the 
right  and  proper  attitude  to  assume.  He  does  not  see  the  fatal 
blow  he  is  inflicting  on  the  fundamental  truths  of  true  Rational- 
ism. As  a  more  general  experiment,  take  any  long  chapter  in  a 
modern  book  on  philosophy,  and  having  extracted  the  gist  of  the 
reasoning,  submit  it  to  that  most  crucial  test,  syllogistic  form. 
Two  results  will  be  observed.  First,  the  precipitate  of  reasoning 
thus  obtained  will,  as  a  rule,  be  in  infinitesimal  proportion  to  the 
amount  of  verbiage  that  has  been  evaporated ;  and,  secondly,  it 
will  often  enough  be  frail  and  worthless,  incapable  of  standing  the 
test  of  light,  still  less  of  handling.  To  exist  at  all,  it  must  be  put 
back  into  its  wordy  and  deceptive  covering.  Let  the  same  ex- 
periment be  tried,  say  with  Suarez  against  James  I.,-^  and  his  one 
page  will  yield  more  solid  produce  of  reason  than  the  whole  bulk 
of  the  other  book.  He  professes  to  reason  and  does  reason,  and 
if  he  reasons  falsely,  he  can  be  detected ;  the  other  professes  to 
reason  and  does  not,  but  it  is  hard  to  discover  that  he  does  not. 

Yet  there  would  seem  to  be  some  hesitation  in  admitting  that 
we  do  not  excel  in  reasoning  powers.  This  is  due  to  the  fact  that 
we  have  no  standard  of  reasoning  to  which  we  compare  ourselves. 
Hence  we  do  not  humble  ourselves  enough.  Worse  than  this,  no 
one  will  do  it  for  us.  In  other  words,  there  is  no  such  thing  in 
our  day  as  philosophical  criticism  of  philosophy — an  extraordi- 
nary paradox,  to* be  sure,  to  those  who  believe  that  the  highly 
intelligent  criticism  which  marks  the  literature,  science  and  art 
of  the  century  extends  to  the  whole  field  of  thought.  However,  it 
takes  no  profound  knowledge  of  ancient  and  modern  philosophy  to  be 
able  to  say  that,  considering  the  masterly  anatomy  practised  by  the 
"  Schools"  on  one  another  and  on  outsiders,  we  moderns  are  utter 

1  Said  by  Aristotle  of  certain  necessary  truths.  An  agnostic  will  probably  see  in 
the  phrase  a  contradiction  in  terms.  Much  in  the  same  way  Mill  thought  that  the 
Aristotelian  syllogism  involved  z. petitio  principii.  It  is  a  curious  fact  quite  overlooked 
by  Mill  that  this  objection  was  met  somewhat  by  Aristotle  more  than  two  thousand 
years  ago 

2  The  title  of  the  work  is  Defensio  Fidei  Catholicce  adversus  Anglicance  Seda 
errores,  quoted  by  Mr.  Lecky,  apparently  at  second  hand,  as  Suarez  De  Fide. 

The  So-called  Problem  of  Evil — A  Protest. 



strangers  to  anything  like  true  philosophical  criticism  of  so-called 
philosophical  books.  This  statement  will  cease  to  be  matter  of 
surprise  if  we  remember  that  in  every  branch  of  true  criticism  the 
learned  world  exacts  certain  conditions  without  which  the  critic 
cannot  be  said  to  be  formed  and  will  not  be  allowed  to  have  his  say. 
Obviously  he  must  know  his  subject,  but  in  this  knowledge  the 
knowledge  of  authorities  also  is  rightly  supposed  to  be  included. 
Never  was  the  phrase,  "  consult  authorities,"  so  much  in  vogue  as 
now,  never  was  public  opinion  in  the  good  sense  so  bent  on  seeing 
that  the  student  should  make  himself  acquainted  with  the  authorities 
who  have  traversed  and  illuminated  the  same  line  of  research. 
Men  are  on  the  watch  not  only  to  catch  him  tripping  in  his  state- 
ments, but  also  to  discover  what  authorities  he  ought  to  have  con- 
sulted and  did  not.  Indeed  this  coercive  spirit  is  sometimes  car- 
ried to  excess.  Witness  especially  the  article  on  Evolution  by 
Mr.  Sully  in  the  new  edition  of  the  "  Encyclopaedia  Britannica," 
wherein  every  Evolutionist  who  has  anything  ridiculous  to  say 
on  or  off  the  subject  has  to  be  set  down,  ticketed,  expounded,  and 
thus  have  justice  done  him  by  the  meek,  long-suffering  modern 
student.  Friends,  and  imperious  ones  too,  are  always  about  to 
tell  the  critic  in  training  that  he  should  have  taken  down  his  Bede 
or  Pepys  or  Blackstone,  as  the  case  may  be.  It  is  much  to  be 
regretted,  they  will  say,  that  Mr.  A.  overlooked  this  treatise  or  that 
pamphlet,  or  presumed  to  sit  down  without  his  **  Littre  "  or  "  Dr. 
Murray  "  before  him.  We  are  exquisitely  sensitive  about  the  honor 
due  to  authorities,  and  we  form  our  critics  accordmgly.  This  rule 
of  the  republic  of  letters  may  be  galling  enough  at  times,  but  it 
has  to  be  kept,  and  the  republic's  police  are  vigilant.  If  the  great 
authority  is  right,  he  has  to  be  read  in  order  to  develop  and  dis- 
tance him  ;  if  he  has  gone  wrong  on  a  point,  he  has  still  to  be  read 
in  order  to  be  refuted,  or  some  other  authority  who  will  refute  him 
has  to  be  appealed  to. 

Such  is  a  part  of  the  process  of  manufacture  that  a  sound  critic 
in  history,  for  example,  or  philosophy,  is  put  through.  It  is,  on 
the  whole,  very  salutary,  and  succeeds  in  fashioning  men  who  in 
turn  become  real  authorities.  It  provides  that  the  unscientific  ele- 
ment be  eliminated  and  the  highest  qualities  of  the  critical  mind 
retained  !  The  critic  is  now  in  the  chair  he  deserves  to  fill,  and 
maintains  with  an  able  hand  the  discipline  of  the  department  over 
which  he  presides.  will  not,  as  a  rule,  venture  to  pre- 
sent him  with  flimsy  and  worthless  books.  Broadly  speaking  we 
may  say  that  the  high  level  maintained  in  our  criticism  of  poetry 
is  most  effective  in  keeping  down  the  growth  of  extravagantly  bad 
productions  in  verse.  Men  are  afraid  of  the  critic.  His  periodical 
raids  into  the  ranks  of  the  great  "  unwhipped"  are  equally  dreaded 

148  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

and  beneficial.  No  one  now-a-days  will  seriously  write  a  book  to 
prove  that  John  Dennis  of  Dunciad  fame  was  a  greater  writer  than 
Pope,  or  Colley  Gibber  a  greater  dramatist  than  Shakespeare.  No 
one  dare. 

Yet  what  are  we  doing  to  form  critics  for  the  protection  of  philo- 
sophy and  the  terror  of  the  wrongdoers  and  foolish  who  may 
trespass  on  this  domain  ?  Nothing  at  all.  We  do  not  form  them, 
because  we  do  not  know  how,  and  because,  for  all  we  know,  Grote 
is  as  good  a  philosopher  as  Aristotle,  or  Mill  as  St.  Thomas.  We 
give  no  command  to  study  authorities,  because  we  know  of  none. 
It  is  not  that  we  have  examined  them  and  found  them  wanting ; 
we  do  not  know  the  outside  of  their  books,  let  alone  their  quali- 
fications. There  is,  indeed,  a  vague  notion  that  they  are  "  dis- 
credited," but  to  be  discredited  is  one  of  the  worst  forms  of  con- 
demnation, and  sentence  of  condemnation  is  lawful  only  after  a 
hearing,  and  we  never  even  professed  to  have  given  them  a  hear- 
ing. It  is  not  as  if  we  found  in  his  first  volume  that  Macaulay 
was  untrustworthy  as  a  historian,  and  then  discarded  him;  it  is  as 
if  a  Frenchman,  hearing  the  name  of  Chaucer,  made  no  further 
inquiry,  but  proceeded  to  declare  ore  rotiindo  that  there  was  no 
early  English  poet.  We  recklessly  assert,  "No  first  principles  of 
philosophy  have  ever  been  established" — when  we  do  not  know 
whether  they  have  ever  been  discussed.  "  Free-will  has  never 
been  proved  " — and  we  could  not  give  a  single  argument  that  was 
ever  advanced  in  its  defence  by  its  ablest  defenders.  **  The  natu- 
ral law  is  a  myth" — and  we  are  utterly  ignorant  that  a  St.  Augus- 
tine has  thought  it  out,  and  that  his  arguments  remain  unanswered. 
If  all  these  and  scores  of  other  truths  are  still  regarded  as  perfectly 
open  and  unestablished,  it  is  no  wonder  that  the  field  of  philosophy 
is  invaded  by  hosts  who  cannot  be  more  ignorant  than  the  critics 
in  command.  They  are  free  to  say  or  do  anything  and  every- 
thing ridiculous,  because  nothing  seems  ridiculous  to  those  who 
know  no  better.  If  no  one  knew  anything  of  history,  how  would 
it  be  shocking  to  maintain  in  a  book  that  Alfred  the  Great  was 
identical  with  Edward  the  Confessor  ?  Yet  it  is  no  whit  less  absurd 
to  maintain  in  philosophy,  as  some  do  gravely  and  unblushingly, 
that  intellect  is  brain-stuff;  if  profound  ignorance  as  to  Shakes- 
peare prevailed,  who  is  to  prevent  us  from'  saying  that  Cibber  is 
as  good  as  he  ?  Yet  this  to  one  who  knows  both  sides  of  the  par- 
allel would  be  about  the  same  as  to  say  that  Suarez  on  "  God's  Prov- 
idence "  is  no  better  than  Mill  against  it.  Do  the  upholders  of 
Mill  know  the  name  of  Suarez  ?  Not  till  you  tell  them.  Do  they 
know  that  he  is  an  authority  ?  No.  Do  they  know  that  he  is  not 
an  authority  ?  No.  Do  they  know  that  his  arguments  have  been 
answered  ?     Yes.     Who  told  them  ?     Some  modern  authority  said 

The  So-called  Problem  of  Evil— A  Protest. 


that  all  these  meji  were  answered  and  discredited.  Did  he  know 
Suarez?  They  don't  know,  but  they  suppose  he  did.  Truly, 
without  the  check  of  critisism,  men  can  and  will  say  the  most  out- 
rageous things,  and  without  the  study  of  the  ancient  authorities, 
there  can  be  no  criticism.  Its  absence  in  philosophy  is  a  great 
incongruity  in  this  critical  age.  More;  it  is  a  grievous  evil  to 
this  would-be  philosophical  age,  for  philosophy  cannot  progress 
when  its  most  rudimentry  proofs  are  travestied  or  denied,  and  tra- 
vestied and  denied  they  ever  will  be  until,  acknowledging  the  impos- 
sibility of  starting,  at  this  age  of  the  world,  a  brand-new  and  quite 
true  system,  we  go  and  consult  the  older  philosophers,  not  to  wor- 
ship, but  honestly  to  examine  them,  and,  according  to  that  exam- 
ination, to  yield  or  withhold  our  assent.  As  it  is,  our  position 
would  be  hardly  tolerable  were  it  not  that  our  ignorance  of  our  state 
is  profound.  Blissfully  unconscious  of  our  own  inabihty  to  praise 
or  censure  judiciously,  we  look  on  while  a  company  of  fellow- 
blunderers  perform  in  equally  blissful  unconsciousness  the  most 
fantastic  tricks  that  ever  made  philosophy  weep.  There  are  few 
more  extraordinary  or  more  humiliating  phenomena  in  the  history 
of  philosophy  than  the  ascendency  over  English  thought  exercised 
a  few  years  ago  by  the  Benthamite  school.  That  miserable  struc- 
ture could  not  have  stood  for  a  day  against  the  attack  of  an  efficient 
body  of  critics,  but  there  was  none  such. 

Any  kind  of  trick  may  be  played  with  impunity  on  modern  phi- 
losophers. Mr.  Hallam  ("  History  of  Literature  ")  gravely  asserts: 
"The  Fathers,  with  the  exception,  perhaps  the  single  one,  of  St. 
Augustine,  had  taught  the  corporeity  of  the  thinking  substance." 
Mr.  Lecky  repeats  the  statement  in  perfect  innocence.  Professor 
Max  Miiller,  with  that  blatant  expression  of  general  disbelief  which 
is  so  unspeakably  distressing  to  the  higher  type  of  the  scientific 
character,  lays  it  down  in  his  "Science  of  Thought"  that  "there 
is  no  such  thing  as  intellect,  understanding,  mind  or  reason."  Mr. 
Jevons  ("  Principles  of  Science")  fears  that  the  existence  of  evil 
may  be  pushed  to  something  like  a  demonstration  against  the 
existence  of  God.  Mr.  Daniel  Greenleaf  Thompson^  in  his  "  Prob- 
lem of  Evil "  assures  us  that  the  free-will  controversy  has  closed 
forever  in  the  utter  discomfiture  of  the  upholders  of  freedom.  If, 
he  adds,  we  are  not  prepared  to  take  his  word  for  this,  he  must 
refer  us  to  men  of  science;  if  we  are  disposed  to  suspect  bias  in 
this  body,  he  has  only  to  hand  us  over  to  the  good  Christian  man 
— he  does  not  say  he  was  also  a  Calvinist— Jonathan  Edwards. 
None  of  these  men,  be  it  observed,  are  in  the  least  ashamed  of 

1  "  Of  New  York  City,"  as  we  are  told  in  the  advertisement  of  another  work  of  his. 

150  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

themselves.  Why  should  they  be?  They  have  usually  acted  up 
to  their  lights.  They  consulted  no  authorities,  for  no  one  pointed 
them  out.  They  evolved  all  things  from  their  own  minds,  because 
they  were  not  told  of  any  minds  that  were  better.  Then  they 
played  before  critics,  and  the  critics  applauded  because  they  were 
no  true  critics. 

As  are  the  critics,  so  are  the  books  which  they  are  incompetent 
to  criticise.  With  the  exception  of  mathematical  treatises  and 
some  few  scientific  ones,  we  may  say  that  books  wholly  occupied 
with  rigorous  demonstration  and  close  reasoning  are  absolutely 
unknown  to  us.  The  dearth  of  such  works  is  not  recognized  as 
deplorable  because,  on  the  principle  of  the  relativity  of  knowledge, 
the  lower  intellectual  functions  which  we  see  exhibited  in  the 
books  we  have,  are  not  known  to  us  as  the  lower,  but  as  the  only 

Let  us  not  be  unjust  to  ourselves.  We  can  do  far  more  feats 
than  are  enumerated  in  Matthew  Arnold's  meagre  catalogue  of 
Philistine  achievements:  "Doors  that  open,  windows  that  shut, 
locks  that  turn,  razors  that  shave,  coats  that  wear,  watches  that  go." 
In  scientific  and  historical  research  and  philological  criticism,  to 
mention  only  three  things  out  of  many,  we  stand  immeasurably 
above  all  the  progress  of  all  the  ages  gone  before.  But  it  must  be 
borne  in  mind  that  philosophy  is  wider  than  all  this,  and  that  there 
are  in  it  vast  recesses  which  we  know  nothing  of,  and  to  which  we 
cannot  possibly  penetrate  without  an  equipment  which,  as  a  mat- 
ter of  fact,  we  have  not  got.  How  does  the  able  historical  work 
show  that  we  are  possessed  of  great  reasoning  powers  as  such  ?  It 
shows  nothing  of  the  sort.  It  proves  undoubtedly  our  possession 
of  extended  knowledge,  large  sympathies  and  impartial  judgment ; 
and  bristling  foot-notes  will  probably  evidence  our  inexhaustible 
patience  in  the  examination  of  original  records.  But,  valuable  as 
these  qualities  are,  they  are  but  a  small  fraction  of  the  capacities 
of  the  human  mind.  If  Aristotle  and  Albertus  Magnus  were  great 
naturalists  in  their  day,  and  employed  many  scientific  methods, 
and  displayed  some  of  the  highest  qualities  of  the  scientific  mind, 
they  were  also  something  more.  They  were  deep  thinkers  about 
the  soul,  and  truth,  and  happiness,  and  virtue,  and  good,  and  evil, 
all  of  them  matters  of  import  to  men,  and  many  of  them,  in  the 
long  run,  of  vast  practical  consequence.  That"  something  more," 
which  these  philosophers  had,  we  have  not,  whatever  else  we  may 
have.  We  neither  excel  ourselves,  nor  respect  those  who  excel 
in  what  is,  after  all,  a  higher  sphere  of  thought.  Our  spirit  of  tol- 
eration has,  indeed,  softened  the  asperities  of  our  language  in  re- 
gard to  that  unhappy  class  of  men,  but  it  may  be  doubted  whether 

The  So-called  Problem  of  Evil — A  Protest.  \  t  \ 

the  feelings  with  which  Thomas  Hobbes  regarded  them  are  more 
charitable  now/ 

If  the  above  contention  be  at  all  correct,  if  the  accuracy  of  thought 
essential  to  true  philosophy  be  replaced  in  modern  days  by  lame 
analysis  and  questionable  logic,  a  corresponding  loss  in  the  clear- 
ness of  our  philosophical  language  may  be  looked  for. 

A  word  on  this  point  may  be  added.  If  the  charge  of  obscurity 
of  expression  is  to  be  proved  against  modern  philosophy,  we  can- 
not fairly  be  required  to  put  on  our  charge-sheet  anything  except 
those  metaphysical  or  purely  psychological  subjects  wherein  alone 
obscurity  is  possible  ;  that  is  to  say,  all  the  clearness,  for  example, 
of  Dr.  Bain  on  the  physiological  parts  of  psychology,  on  nerves 
and  muscles  and  organs,  where  there  is  no  room  for  the  crimes  of 
unintelligibility,  cannot  be  adduced  as  rebutting  evidence. 

Only  one  extract  can  here  be  given.  It  is  not  affected  by  its 
context,  it  is  anything  but  a  solitary  instance,  and  it  is  typical  of 
the  language  of  Mr.  Spencer  as  a  professed  metaphysician.  So 
regarded,  it  would  seem  to  indicate,  on  the  part  of  English  expres- 
sion, an  approximation  to  the  rapidity  of  descent  with  which  much 
German  philosophy  has  gone  down  into  the  depths  of  the  unintel- 

"  The  conception  of  a  rhythmically-moving  mass  of  sensible 
matter  is  a  synthesis  of  certain  states  of  consciousness  that  stand 
related  in  a  certain  succession.  The  concept  of  a  rhythmically- 
moving  molecule  is  one  in  which  these  states  and  their  relations 
have  been  reduced  to  the  extremest  limits  of  dimension  represent- 
able  to  the  mind,  and  are  then  assumed  to  be  further  reduced  far 
beyond  the  limits  of  representation.  So  that  this  rhythmically- 
moving  molecule  which  is  our  unit  of  composition  of  external  phe- 
nomena, is  mental  in  a  three-fold  sense.  Our  experiences  of  a 
rhythmically-moving  mass,  whence  the  conception  of  it  is  derived, 
are  states  of  mind  having  objective  counterparts  that  are  unknown  ; 
the  derived  conception  of  a  rhythmically-moving  molecule  is  formed 

1  Quoting  Luther  with  approval,  Hobbes  says  ("Questions  concerning  Liberty, 
etc."  ) :  "  Aquinas  set  up  the  kingdom  of  Aristotle,  the  destroyer  of  godly  doctrine." 
This  from  Hobbes,  who  was  himself  a  violent  opponent  of  Free  Will !  Again,  in  the 
treatise  •'  Of  Man,"  cap,  8,  speaking  of  Suarez  and  other  schoolmen,  he  remarks : 
"  This  kind  of  absurdity  may  rightly  be  numbered  among  the  many  sorts  of  madness, 
and  all  the  time  that  guided  by  clear  thoughts  of  their  worldly  lust  they  forbear  dis- 
puting or  writing  thus,  but  lucid  intervals."  Most  of  the  great  scholastics,  as  we 
know,  were  furnished  by  the  Franciscan,  Dominican  and  Jesuit  Orders,  all  of  which 
once  wrote  and  fought  so  hard  that  they  really  had  no  time  for  "  worldly  fust,"  which, 
by  the  way,  in  Hobbes's  mind  seems  to  be  a  hopeful  sign  of  mental  sanity. 

2  See  one  of  the  most  intelligible  of  German  works,  Lotze's  "  Microcosm."  Even 
in  the  admirable  translation  of  the  late  Miss  Hamilton  and  Miss  Jones,  Lotze  is  not 
too  clear. 

152  American  Catholic  Qtiarterl^'  Review, 

of  states  of  mind  that  have  no  directly-presented  objective  counter- 
parts at  all,  and  when  we  try  to  think  of  the  rhythmically-moving 
molecule  as  we  suppose  it  to  exist,  we  do  so  by  imagining  that 
we  have  re-represented  these  representative  states  on  an  infinitely 
reduced  scale.  So  that  the  unit  out  of  which  we  build  our  inter- 
pretation of  material  phenomena  is  triply  ideal." — {Principles  of 
Psychology,  2d  edition,  stereotyped,  vol.  i.  p.  625.) 

Neither  Aristotle  nor  St.  Thomas  has  anything  to  show  to  equal 

We  are  painfully  aware  of  the  danger  one  runs  in  quoting  passages 
like  the  foregoing,  with  the  intention  avowed  above.  Even  to  the 
politest  of  readers  the  obvious  retort  is  open.  "  It  may  be  to  him 
unintelligible,  but  who  is  he  ?"  etc.  A  personal  reference  is  thus 
forced  on  me.  We  confess  that  at  first  we  did  feel  in  duty  bound  to 
be  ashamed  of  the  incapacity  which  failed  to  apprehend  a  great 
writer's  meaning.  Then  we  read  and  re-read.  A  comfortable  sus- 
picion at  last  dawned,  which  gradually  ripened  into  the  conviction 
that  it  was  not  wholly  our  stupidity  that  was  to  blame,  but  thatthe 
writer  was,  essentially  and  intrinsically,  unintelligible.  There  are, 
of  course,  some  who  say  that  they  can  understand  all  or  nearly  all 
of  such  writing,  but  we  must  not  be  rudely  skeptical.^  To  us,  at 
least,  less  gifted  mortals,  much,  very  much  of  it,  seems  nothing 
short  of  glorified  rubbish. 

One  thing  is  certain,  that  works  like  Mr.  Spencer's  mark  an 
epoch  in  philosophical  expression^  It  is  impossible  to  conceive 
that  a  committee,  composed  of  certain  great  names  in  English 
philosophy,  say.  Bacon,  Locke,  Hobbes  and  Paley,  and  appointed 
to  report  on  Mr.  Spencer,  could  do  their  work  properly ;  the  lan- 
guage of  the  1 6th,  17th  and  i8th  century  philosophy  is  so  essen- 
tially different  from  ours,  that  is,  from  Mr.  Spencer's.  It  may  be 
doubted  whether  they  would  understand  one  page  of  his  meta- 
physical style.  The  presumption  is  that  there  must  be  something 
wrong,  at  least  in  his  language. 

Starting  from  one  of  the  so-called  problems  of  the  day,  we  w^ere 
led  to  dwell  on  a  difficulty  or  disqualification  which  we  thought 
existed  in  regard  to  the  profitable  discussion  of  any  such  matters 
at  all. 

Briefly,  our  reasoning  and  logical  powers  are  not  equal  to  the 

This  evil,  we  are  confident,  would  be  remedied  in  great  measure 
by  a  studious  and  judicious  reading  of  the  great  reasoners  of  the 
old  philosophy,  especially  St.  Thomas  Aquinas. 

But  here  our  protest  tends  to  become  a  plea,  and  this  must 
not  be. 

1  One  can  better  say  strong  things  in  Greek,  and  not  seem  too  severe ;  00:5  iart  avaki^alov 
3  rtj  \iyti  ravra  {moXa/i  paveiv, — "  Arist.  Metaphys.,  iii.  3. 

What  the  Languages  Owe  to  the  Catholic  Church,        153 



A  S  language  is  made  up  of  words,  and  as  the  Catholic  Church 
^^~^  is  founded  by  the  Eternal  Word,  there  ought  naturally  to  be 
a  close  connection  between  the  Church  and  language.  Doubtless 
all  things  were  created  by  this  same  Word  :  "  The  world  was  made 
by  Him,  and  without  Him  was  made  nothing  that  was  made." 
But  the  Church  is  His  new,  His  supernatural  creation,  the  kingdom 
of  all  regenerated  in  Him,  His  spouse  "  without  spot  or  wrinkle." 
The  creation  of  the  universe  cost  Him  but  one  " ;  that  of 
the  Church  took  Him  thirty-three  years  of  doing  and  teaching. 
This  world  and  the  figure  thereof  shall  pass  away,  but  the  Church 
triumphant  shall  abide  forever. 

The  Incarnate  Word  built  His  Church  upon  the  rock,  Peter,  a 
new  name,  a  word  coined  as  it  were  out  of  Simon's  faith  in  Our 
Lord's  divinity,  professed  in  these  words  :  "  Thou  art  Christ,  the 
Son  of  the  living  God ;"  by  which  he  merited  to  hear,  "  Blessed 
art  thou,  Simon  Bar-Jona :  because  flesh  and  blood  hath  not  re- 
vealed it  to  thee,  but  my  Father  who  is  in  heaven ;"  and  again, 
''I  have  prayed  for  thee,  that  thy  faith  fail  not:  and  thou  being 
once  converted,  confirm  thy  brethren."  Faith,  then,  in  Christ  is 
the  support  of  the  Rock  itself,  and  consequently  of  the  whole 
spiritual  edifice  built  upon  the  Rock,  the  Church.  But  "faith 
Cometh  by  hearing,  and  hearing  by  the  word  of  God."  Here  we 
see  language  made  the  instrument  whereby  to  establish,  consoli- 
date, and  perpetuate  that  masterpiece  of  creation,  the  Church  of 
God.  Faith  in  the  word  of  God  is  not  only  the  foundation  and 
support  of  the  Church,  but  the  very  life  of  every  member  in  the 
Church,  and,  therefore,  of  the  whole  Church.  "  Man  liveth  not 
by  bread  alone,  but  by  every  word  that  proceedeth  from  the  mouth 
of  God."  "The  just  man  liveth  by  faith."  "This  is  the  victory 
which  overcometh  the  world,  our  faith."  Thus  the  Word  builds 
His  Church  upon  the  Rock  imbedded  in  his  own  word  adhered  to 
by  faith,  and  supports  it  by  that  same  word,  which,  though  "  heaven 
and  earth  shall  pass  away,  shall  not  pass  away."  Had  we  nothing 
more  than  this,  remembering  that  words  constitute  language,  we 
should  expect  to  find  a  very  remarkable  relation  subsisting  between 
the  Catholic  Church  and  the  languages. 

But  this  is  not  all.  When  the  promise  of  the  Eternal  Word  was 
fulfilled,  and  the  Paraclete,  the  Spirit  of  truth,  descended  upon  the 

154  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

Apostles  with  the  plenitude  of  His  gifts  and  power,  to  enable 
them  to  complete  and  perpetuate  the  work  begun  by  the  Eternal 
Word,  He  appeared  in  the  form  of  fiery  tongues.  What  did  this 
denote?  It  denoted  what  immediately  followed  :  "  And  they  began 
to  speak  in  divers  tongues  the  wonderful  works  of  God."  It  de- 
noted that,  as  they  had  received  the  gift  of  faith  through  the  words 
of  the  Uncreated  Word,  so  they  were  to  use  the  same  means,  words 
(language),  for  the  same  end,  viz.,  that  their  hearers  might  receive 
the  gift  of  faith  and  be  incorporated  into  the  spiritual  Body  of 
Christ,  the  Church.  It  denoted  that,  since  human  means  were 
wanting,  they  were  to  be  supernaturally  supplied  with  the  means 
of  carrying  out  their  most  ample  mission  and  of  executing  their 
most  imperative  orders,  **  Go,  teach  all  nations."  For  it  is  abso- 
lutely necessary  for  the  teacher  to  use  the  language  of  the  taught, 
since  language  is  the  medium  of  communication  between  mind 
and  mind.  But  the  Teacher  of  all  nations  must  be  versed  in  the 
languages  of  all  nations.  Therefore,  the  Divine  Enlightener  and 
Guide  of  the  Church  came  upon  the  Apostles  in  the  form  of  tongues 
of  fire,  enabling  them  to  communicate  by  language  the  light  of 
truth  with  which  He  filled  their  minds,  and  to  diffuse  on  all  sides 
the  fire  of  charity  with  which  He  inflamed  their  hearts.  Nor  was 
it  alone  at  the  birth  of  the  Church  that  the  miracle  of  tongues  was 
witnessed.  It  has  been  repeated  from  time  to  time  through  all  the 
ages  since  in  favor  of  her  children,  her  zealous  missionaries,  dis- 
pensers of  the  divine  word,  as  is  abundantly  proved  in  the  case  of 
St.  Francis  Xavier,  St.  Paul  of  the  Cross,  and  so  many  others. 

How  faithfully  the  Catholic  Church  has  fulfilled  her  sublime 
office  of  Teacher  of  all  nations  has  been  repeatedly  acknowledged, 
even  by  those  who  are  not  of  her  fold,  and,  indeed,  holds  the  most 
prominent  place  on  the  pages  of  history.  The  Head  of  the  Church 
is  always  mindful  of  the  injunction  given  him  in  the  person  of 
Peter,  "  Feed  my  lambs,  feed  my  sheep."  The  whole  flock  must 
be  fed  with  "  the  words  of  eternal  life."  For  this  there  is  need  of 
all  the  languages,  for  the  flock  is  found  in  every  country  in  the 
world.  The  languages  must  hold  a  prominent  place,  too,  in  the 
armory  of  the  Church  in  her  spiritual  warfare  against  ignorance 
and  error.  Each  Christian  combatant  is  told  to  take  unto  him 
"  the  shield  of  faith  and  the  sword  of  the  Spirit  (which  is  the  word 
of  God)."  Every  follower  of  Christ  is  a  soldier,  who  must  fight 
the  good  fight,  and  take  heaven  by  violence. 

The  burning  zeal  with  which  the  Apostles  issued  forth  from  the 
Coenaculum,  the  ardor  with  which  heroic  armies  of  Catholic  mis- 
sionaries have  since  spread  their  peaceful  conquests  over  the  earth, 
the  eagerness  with  which  the  Church  now  stretches  out  her  ma- 
ternal arms  to  the  nations  and  tribes  that  are  yet  shrouded  in  igno- 

What  the  Languages  Owe  to  the  Catholic  Church.        155 

ranee  and  barbarism,  were  well  symbolized,  on  the  day  of  Pente- 
cost, by  the  "  cloven  tongues,  as  it  were,  of  fire."  For  fire  is  an 
active  principle,  ever  striving  to  communicate  its  nature  to  all 
within  its  reach,  diffusing  around  it  light  and  heat,  and  always 
mounting  upward.  Such,  too,  are  Charity  and  her  eldest  daughter, 
Zeal.  They  cannot  remain  inactive.  So  long  as  there  are  minds 
in  the  darkness  of  ignorance,  hearts  in  the  coldness  of  selfishness, 
these  heaven-born  virtues  will  go  out  toward  them  in  floods  of 
light  and  heat,  bearing  to  all  the  knowledge  and  love  of  the  true, 
the  beautiful,  and  the  good,  thus  refining,  civilizing,  and  elevating 
them  to  the  sublime  sphere  of  their  supernatural  destiny.  And 
such,  again,  has  been  pre-eminently  the  character  of  the  Catholic 
Church ;  it  is  such  to-day,  and  such  it  will  be  to  the  end  of  time. 
Gratis  she  has  received,  gratis  does  she  desire  to  give  of  her 
abundance.  She  is  the  sun  in  the  spiritual  universe,  enlightening, 
beautifying,  and  animating  all ;  the  reservoir  of  heavenly  graces 
and  benedictions,  supplied  to  overflowing  from  the  Eternal  Foun- 
tain ;  the  organ  through  which  the  Eternal  Father  communicates 
with  his  adopted  children,  the  Mother  of  all  the  faithful,  the  civil- 
izer  of  nations,  the  promoter  of  learning,  the  support  of  art  and 
science,  the  friend  of  the  downtrodden,  the  benefactress  and  lib- 
erator of  the  human  race,  the  great  central  mart  of  all  the  lan- 
guages, their  union  depot. 

The  Church  is  intensely  aware  of  the  immense  importance  of 
her  high  mission  as  teacher  of  nations,  and  of  the  greatness  of  the 
reward  awaiting  those  who  do  and  teach;  and,  therefore,  reckons 
all  labor  sweet,  all  sacrifices  easy,  all  losses  gain,  that  she  may  ac- 
complish her  task  and  be  able  to  render  a  good  account  to  the 
Prince  of  Pastors  at  His  coming.  Accordingly  we  see  with  what 
alacrity  and  devotedness  the  bishops  and  priests  of  the  Catholic 
Church,  from  the  very  days  of  the  Apostles  down  through  every 
age,  set  themselves  to  evangelizing,  and  by  evangelizing  civilizing, 
elevating,  and  refining  the  world.  Teaching  is  her  first  and  indis- 
pensable duty,  since  "  faith  is  the  substance  of  things  to  be  hoped 
for,"  the  foundation  of  all  Christian  virtues.  "  Without  faith  it  is 
impossible  to  please  God."  But  faith  cometh  by  hearing,  and 
hearing  by  the  word  of  God.  And  how  can  they  hear  without  a 
teacher,  a  divinely  sent  teacher,  an  infallible  teacher?  Only  the 
Catholic  Church  is  such  a  teacher,  only  she  is  stamped  with  the 
seal  of  heaven,  inerrancy,  unity,  apostolicity. 

The  Apostles  deemed  it  "  not  fit  to  leave  the  word  .of  God," 
even  for  corporeal  works  of  mercy,  and  therefore  elected  deacons 
"  to  serve  tables."  The  "  Vessel  of  Election  "  says  of  himself, 
that  he  baptized  very  few,  "  for  Christ  sent  me,  not  to  baptize,  but 
to  preach  the  Gospel."     He  writes  to  Timothy,  "  Preach  the  word 

156  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review^ 

of  God;  be  instant  in  season,  out  of  season."  The  Apostles  were 
cast  into  prison  for  preaching  the  Gospel  of  Jesus  Christ.  An  angel 
delivered  them,  and  they  went  on  preaching  more  forcibly  than 
ever.  They  were  charged  by  the  rulers  of  the  people  and  the  an- 
cients, "  not  to  speak  at  all,  nor  teach  in  the  name  of  Jesus."  They 
answered,  "  If  it  be  just  in  the  sight  of  God  to  hear  you  rather 
than  God,  judge  ye.  For  we  cannot  but  speak  the  things  which 
we  have  seen  and  heard."  And  they  went  and  "  spoke  the  word 
of  God  with  confidence."  Sublime  Non  posstumis  I  so  often 
repeated  since,  when  "the  Gentiles  raged,  and  the  people  de- 
vised vain  things:  The  kings  of  the  earth  stood  up,  and  the  princes 
assembled  together  against  the  Lord  and  against  his  Christ ;"  aye, 
and  against  His  Vicar  on  earth,  the  visible  Head  of  the  Church. 
Non  possiumis^  cried  St.  Gregory  the  Seventh  to  Henry  the  Fourth. 
We  cannot  allow  you  to  intrude  your  hirelings  into  the  places  of 
true  pastors,  nor  see  the  flock  intrusted  to  us  perish  for  want  of 
seasonable  spiritual  food.  Some  three  centuries  ago,  it  was  at- 
tempted, on  a  large  scale,  to  substitute  the  religion  of  Luther,  or 
of  Calvin,  or  of  Henry  the  Eighth,  for  that  of  Jesus  Christ,  and  it 
was  proposed,  at  least,  to  modify  this  in  several  particulars ;  but 
the  whole  Church,  assembled  in  Council,  energetically  declared 
aloud,  No7i  posstimns.  We  cannot  change  or  moclify  the  sacred 
deposit  of  revealed  truth  committed  to  our  safe  keeping,  for  it  is 
absolutely  unchangeable.  Let  the  nations  that  will  have  the  vari- 
able and  varying  novelties  of  man's  devising,  instead  of  the  whole 
unadulterated  truth,  be  cut  off  as  rotten  branches.  And  behold  they 
have  withered  and  decayed,  and  are  now  hardly  recognizable  under 
the  varied  forms  of  descending  rationalism,  of  putrescent  senti- 
mentalism,  and  the  dry  bones  of  agnosticism  and  evolutionism. 
Non  possumns^  cried  More  and  Fisher,  as  they  ascended  the  scaf- 
fold. We  can  die,  but  we  cannot  accept  Henry  the  Eighth  as  Pope, 
as  supreme  teacher  of  faith  and  morals.  Non  possunms,  repeated 
all  Ireland,  after  their  bishops  and  priests,  when,  hunted  down  like 
wild  beasts,  they  sought  some  secluded  spot  behind  a  remote 
hedge,  or  in  the  bogs,  or  on  the  mountain-side,  where  they  might 
offer  up  the  Holy  Sacrifice,  teach  their  flocks  and  minister  to  their 
spiritual  wants,  at  the  risk  of  paying  the  penalty  of  death  for  every 
such  act,  rendered  treasonable  by  order  of  Queen  Elizabeth.  We 
cannot  barter  our  faith  for  any  consideration.  Non  possnmiis,  said 
magnanimous  Pius  the  Ninth,  when  the  nations  called  upon  him 
by  the  voice  of  public  opinion  to  conform  his  teaching  to  the  fash- 
ion of  the  age,  which  they  styled  progress.  Then  came  Bismarck, 
ordering  every  Catholic  priest  and  bishop  off  the  Prussian  soil  if 
they  did  not  accept  the  alternative  of  becoming  tools  of  the  state, 
and  teaching  its   doctrine  instead  of  the  gospel  of  Jesus  Christ ; 

W/tat  the  Languages  Owe  to  the  Catholic  Church,        157 

and  the  bishops  and  priests,  with  one  voice,  cried  out,  No7i  possti- 
jmis.  They  cheerfully  incurred  fines  and  penalties,  prison  and 
expatriation,  by  n9bly  disregarding  that  mockery  of  law  put  forth 
in  contravention  to  the  command  of  God.  Non  possitmus,  say  the 
hierarchy  and  clergy  of  France  to  the  laicizing  tyrants  of  the  Re- 
public. We  cannot  consent  to  worship  Hugo,  or  Voltaire,  or  any 
other  such  deity  of  yours,  instead  of  Jesus  Christ.  We  cannot 
send  our  children  to  your  schools,  where  such  abominable  super- 
stitions are  taught  and  practised.  We  cannot  give  up  our  Christian 
schools  ;  we  must  have  Christian  teachers.  Non  possnmus,s2iy  our 
zealous  pastors,  and  our  fervent  practical  Catholics  at  home,  to  the 
voice  of  a  miserable  petty  economy.  We  cannot  send  our  chil- 
dren to  their  godless  public  schools,  nor  risk  their  loss  of  faith, 
more  precious  than  gold,  for  any  paltry  consideration.  Of  the 
two  evils  we  prefer  the  less — the  gross  injustice  of  having  to  pay 
for  schools  that  are  a  public  nuisance.  For  the  time  being,  we  will 
build  and  support  our  own  schools.  Non  possmmis,  say  those  vigi- 
lant and  conscientious  parents,  who  feel  the  weight  of  their  re- 
sponsibility, to  a  certain  class  of  newspapers  and  periodicals.  We 
cannot  admit  your  worthless  trash  under  our  roof,  nor  allow  our 
virtuous  family  to  read  your  vile  articles  and  foul  pages,  where  our 
holy  religion  and  venerable  Mother  Church  are  maligned  and  vil- 
lified,  virtue  ridiculed,  sound  principles  ignored,  and  scenes  of 
refined  immorality  and  scandal  presented  attractively  for  pastime. 
Non  possnntns,  say  those  courageous  youths  whom  the  syren  voice 
of  the  tempter  would  turn  aside  from  the  high  paths  of  rectitude 
and  honor.  We  cannot  descend  from  the  peaceful  and  delightful 
road  of  virtue  into  the  low  and  crooked  ways  of  vice  and  dishon- 
esty, nor  exchange  eternal  joys  for  momentary  pleasure. 

What  St.  Paul  said  of  himself,  "  Woe  is  me,  if  I  preach  not  the 
Gospel,"  has  always  been  the  sentiment  of  the  Ecclesia  docens. 
Woe  unto  me  if  I  teach  not  the  nations.  It  being  of  the  very 
essence  of  her  mission  to  teach  all  nations,  the  Church  must  have 
made  the  study  of  languages  a  duty  of  primary  importance  to  all 
aspirants  to  the  sacred  ministry.  The  Propaganda  at  Rome,  of 
polyglot  celebrity,  is  a  specimen  of  the  care  and  attention  bestowed 
upon  this  important  subject  throughout  the  Church's  long  and 
grand  career.  Speaking  of  the  linguistic  powers  displayed  by  the 
students  of  this  distinguished  seat  of  learning,  on  occasion  of  the 
late  visit  of  the  Irish  bishops  to  Rome,  the  Moniteiir  de  Rome,  as 
quoted  by  the  Ave  Maria,  says:  "These  literary  productions,  in 
language  of  every  nation — from  Hebrew,  Chaldean,  Persian,  to 
Russian,  English,  and  Italian— presented  a  remarkable  proof  of 
the  cosmopolitan  and  civilizing  work  of  the  Propaganda.  The  re- 
citations were   interspersed  with  songs  or  hymns  peculiar  to  the 

I  eg  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

country  whose  language  was  represented."  It  is  well  known  that 
there  are  thirty-two  languages  spoken  there.  It  is  only  the  Cath- 
olic Church  that  could  have  given  us  that  polyglot  wonder  of  the 
world,  Mezzofanti. 

The  Catholic  missionaries  were  not  content  with  knowing  and 
speaking  the  languages  of  the  countries  they  went  to  evangelize 
and  civilize.  They  wrote  grammars  and  dictionaries  of  those  lan- 
guages, had  them  published,  and  by  their  superior  skill  in  the  more 
perfect  languages  awakened  in  natives  and  foreigners  attention  to 
what  they  found  good  in  those  languages,  thus  attaching  an  im- 
portance to  the  subject  it  otherwise  never  would  have  had.  "  The 
missionaries  of  Central  Africa,"  writes  the  Ave  Maria  a  few  weeks 
ago,  "have  had  printed  at  Paris  the  first  Ruganda  grammar.  This 
language  is  spoken  by  the  people  dwelling  on  the  borders  of  Lake 
Victoria  Nyanza.  The  missionaries,  leaving  no  writings  to  assist 
them  in  its  study,  were  obliged  to  depend  solely  upon  conversations 
with  the  natives.  The  grammar  is  the  result  of  three  years'  labor. 
A  dictionary,  containing  six  or  seven  hundred  words,  together 
with  select  stories  and  legends,  was  also  prepared  by  these  apos- 
tohc  men,  but,  unfortunately,  the  manuscript  was  lost  in  a  ship- 
wreck. They  are,  however,  actively  at  work  in  repairing  the 

Thus  has  the  Church  been  ever  improving  and  refining  and 
elevating  the  languages  at  the  same  time  that  she  has  been  advanc- 
ing the  people  intellectually  and  morally,  socially  and  politically, 
individually  and  collectively.  Take  up  any  of  the  literatures  of 
Europe;  examine  its  origin,  development  and  progress;  study  its 
genius,  aptitudes  and  peculiarities,  and  you  will  invariably  find 
that  the  Catholic  Church  has  exercised  by  far  the  most  powerful 
influence  in  bringing  it  to  its  present  state  of  perfection.  Bishop 
Ulphilas,  between  360  and  379,  translated  almost  the  whole  Bible 
into  Moeso-Gothic,  which  is  the  earliest  specimen  extant  of  the 
Teutonic  languages.  He  framed  a  new  alphabet  of  twenty-four 
letters,  four  of  which  were  invented  by  himself  The  Codex  Ar- 
genteus  (rather  Aureus  et  Argenteus)  is  still  preserved  at  Upsal, 
enclosed  in  a  silver  case. 

In  his  History  of  English  Literature  and  Language  Craik  says 
(p.  27) :  "  It  is  somewhat  remarkable  that,  while  a  good  many 
names  of  the  natives  of  Gaul  are  recorded  in  connection  with  the  last 
age  of  Roman  literature,  scarcely  a  British  name  of  that  period  of 
any  literary  reputation  has  been  preserved,  if  we  except  a  few 
which  figure  in  the  history  of  the  Christian  Church."  But  the  first 
ages  of  English  literature  are  equally  remarkable  for  the  conspicu- 
ous absence  of  other  than  names  immediately  connected  with  the 
Catholic  Church.     St.  Gildas  the  Wise,  the  first  English  historian 

What  the  Languages  Owe  to  the  Catholic  Church.        159 

of  whom  anything  remains,  was  of  course  her  son.  There  never 
was  a  saint  out  of  her  communion.  She  only  put  on  a  new  and 
perfect  form  when  her  Divine  Founder  put  on  the  form  of  man  • 
she  was  the  Church  of  God  from  the  beginning,  as  she  will  be  to 
the  end.  The  next  historical  writer  was  a  monk  of  Bangor,  Nen- 
nius  or  Ninian. 

Now  of  all  writers  who  do  not  treat  ex  professo  of  language,  the 
historian  does  most  for  the  language  of  that  people  for  whom  he 
writes,  in  its  earliest  stage.  He  writes  for  the  whole  people,  and 
therefore  must  adopt  a  style  at  once  plain  and  simple,  yet  suf- 
ciently  dignified  and  diversified  to  meet  the  requirements  of  his 
subject.  His  object  being  to  convey  the  truth  of  facts  (we  are  not 
including  our  inventors  of  facts  for  scientific  histories),  his  main 
point  is  to  attach  plain,  intelligible  signs  to  clear  and  fixed  ideas, 
precluding  the  possibility  of  doubt  or  equivocation,  the  one  thing 
most  wanted  in  the  first  development  of  a  language. 

Aldhelm,  abbot  of  Malmesbury,  and  first  Bishop  of  Sherborn, 
who  died  in  709,  who  "could  write  and  speak  Greek  like  a  native 
of  Greece,"  is  the  most  ancient  of  the  Latin  writers  among  the 
Angles  and  Saxons  whose  works  remain.  But  it  may  be  asked, 
What  have  Latin  and  Greek,  which  the  Catholic  Church  has  in 
some  sort  made  her  own,  to  do  with  the  English  language  ?  Let 
G.  P.  Marsh  answer :  "  The  Latin  Grammar  has  become  a  general 
standard,  wherewith  to  compare  that  of  all  other  languages,  the 
medium  through  which  all  the  nations  of  Christendom  have  be- 
come acquainted  with  the  structure  and  philosophy  of  their  own ; 
and  technical  grammar,  the  mechanical  combinations  of  language, 
can  be  nowhere  else  so  advantageously  studied,"  except,  of  course, 
at  Harvard ! 

Hear  Mr.  Marsh  again  :  "  I  do  but  echo  the  universal  opinion 
of  all  persons  competent  to  pronounce  on  the  subject,  in  express- 
ing my  own  conviction  that  the  language  and  literature  of  ancient 
Greece  constitute  the  most  efficient  instrument  of  mental  training 
ever  enjoyed  by  man  ;  and  that  a  familiarity  with  that  wonderful 
speech,  its  poetry,  its  philosophy,  its  eloquence,  and  the  history  it 
embalms,  is  incomparably  the  most  valuable  of  intellectual  pos- 
sessions. The  Grammar  of  the  Greek  language  is  much  more 
flexible,  more  tolerant  of  aberration,  less  rigid  in  its  requirements, 
than  the  Latin."  Remark  here  that,  as  intellectuality  is  the  meas- 
ure of  language,  great  indeed  must  be  the  gain  to  all  our  modern 
languages  from  the  Greek,  and  great,  too,  should  be  our  gratitude 
to  the  Catholic  Church  for  having  handed  it  down  to  us  replete 
with  a  new  and  transcending  importance,  its  being  made  the  vehicle 
of  the  written  word  of  God. 

Venerable  Bede  greatly  enriched  the  English  language.      He 

i6o  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

wrote  treatises  on  Grammar,  the  Logic  of  Aristotle,  Orthography 
and  Versification,  all  which  bear  directly  on  language.  For  logic, 
in  fixing  the  thought,  fixes  also  the  expression,  giving  precision, 
cogency  and  clearness  to  the  language.  The  accomplished  author 
of  Christian  Schools  and  Scholars,  speaking  of  Bede's  numerous 
works  (forty-five),  makes  these  remarks:  "There  is  one  subject 
which  engaged  his  attention  that  deserves  a  more  particular  notice ; 
I  mean  the  labors  he  directed  to  the  grammatical  formation  of  his 
native  language,  a  work  of  vast  importance,  which,  in  every  coun- 
try where  the  barbarous  nations  had  established  themselves,  had 
to  be  undertaken  by  the  monastic  scholars.  Rohrbacher  observes 
that  St.  Bede  did  much  by  his  treatises  on  grammar  and  orthog- 
raphy to  impress  a  character  of  regularity  on  the  modern  lan- 
guages which  in  the  eighth  and  ninth  centuries  were  beginning  to 
be  formed  out  of  the  Latin  and  Germanic  dialects.  Much  more 
was  his  influence  felt  on  the  Anglo-Saxon  dialect,  in  which  he  both 
preached  and  wrote.  .  .  .  Besides  commenting  on  nearly  the  whole 
Bible,  Bede  is  known  to  have  translated  both  the  Psalter  and 
the  Four  Gospels.  .  .  .  Before  their  conversion  to  Christianity  the 
Anglo-Saxons  possessed  no  literature,  that  is  to  say,  no  written 
compositions  of  any  kind,  and  their  language  had  not  therefore 
assumed  a  regular  grammatical  form.  In  this  they  resembled  most 
of  the  other  barbarous  nations,  of  whom  St.  Irenaeus  observes  that 
they  held  the  faith  by  tradition,  *  without  the  help  of  pen  and  ink  ;' 
meaning,  as  he  himself  explains,  that  for  want  of  letters  they  could 
have  no  use  of  the  Scriptures." 

•  Ex  lino  disce  omnes.  Thus  the  nations  of  Europe  to-day  use  the 
very  languages  that  were,  with  themselves,  snatched  from  barbar- 
ism by  the  Catholic  Church,  to  vilify  their  common  benefactress. 
But  "  the  servant  is  not  above  his  master."  Glorious  sign  of  the 
Spouse  of  Christ !  "  Blessed  are  you  when  men  shall  revile  you, 
and  persecute  you,  and  shall  say  all  manner  of  evil  against  you 
falsely,  for  my  sake."  It  is  unnecessary  to  mention  Wilfrid,  Boni- 
face, Alfred,  and  other  names  of  early  renown  in  English  litera- 
ture. We  have  seen  what  Bishop  Ulphilas  did  for  the  Moeso- 
Gothic,  and,  therefore,  for  all  the  later  Teutonic  dialects,  and  con- 
sequently for  the  largest  element  in  the  English  language.  We 
have  seen  what  Bede  did  for  the  Anglo-Saxon,  and  accordingly 
for  our  modern  English. 

The  next  largest  element  in  the  English  language,  Latin,  is 
altogether  the  language  of  the  Church.  Latin  is  one  of  the  three 
languages  that  had  been,  in  a  manner,  sanctified  by  touching  the 
sacred  emblem  of  redemption,  whose  privilege  it  was  to  proclaim 
the  kingship  of  the  Incarnate  Word,  and  must  not,  therefore,  per- 
ish.    Like  the  Cross,  to  which  it  was  fastened,  it  was  destined  to 

What  the  Languages  Ozve  to  the  Catholic  Church.        i6i 

be  enshrined  with  honor,  and  to  Hve  a  glorious  life  in  the  magnifi- 
cent ritual  and  awe-inspiring  services  of  the  Catholic  Church.  It 
is  a  dead  language  to  the  worldling  and  to  those  who  are  not  of 
the  household  of  the  Faith  ;  but  to  the  fervent  Catholic,  who  in- 
stinctively recognizes  the  sweet  accents  of  his  beautiful  mother- 
tongue,  it  has  a  charm  that  speaks  to  his  heart  of  heaven  and 
heavenly  things.  It  was  too  near  the  adorable  Head  of  the  Man- 
God  in  His  supreme  ignominy,  not  to  share  in  the  halo  of  glory 
with  which  it  was  crowned  in  the  resurrection.  Now  without  the 
Latin  there  was  no  Italian,  no  French,  no  Spanish  language. 
Without  the  Catholic  Church,  as  everybody  admits,  there  was  no 
Latin,  no  Greek,  no  Hebrew  worth  mentioning,  centuries  ago.  A 
few  fragmentary  fossil  remains  might  possibly  be  casually  dug  up 
here  and  there  from  some  buried  archives  or  discovered  in  the 
vaults  beneath  a  library  cremation.  But  the  Catholic  Church 
touched  them,  and,  behold,  they  live  !  The  word  of  life  has  been 
committed  to  them,  and  she  guards  them  as  the  apple  of  her  eye. 
Hebrew  or  Syro-Chaldaic  and  Greek  had  already  been  consecrated 
to  the  sacred  purpose  of  transmitting  the  Old  Testament  from 
generation  to  generation ;  and  now  Latin  receives  its  hallowed 
contents  augmented  by  the  New,  and  carries  them  beyond  the 
limits  of  the  Roman  Empire  into  regions  over  which  her  victorious 
eagle  had  never  ventured  his  daring  flight. 

"  The  introduction  of  Christianity  among  the  Anglo-Saxons  at 
the  opening  of  the  seventh  "  (close  of  the  sixth)  ''century,"  writes 
Noah  Webster,  "  brought  with  it  the  study  of  the  Latin.  The  cul- 
tivation of  learning  and  letters  belonged  almost  exclusively  to 
ecclesiastics,  with  whom  Latin  was  the  professional  language. 
Hence  quite  a  number  of  Latin  or  Latinized  Greek  words  passed 
into  the  Anglo-Saxon."  So  true  is  it  that  learning  and  culture 
have  been  introduced  into  the  nations  of  Enrope,  aye,  and  whereve'r 
they  are  found  out  of  Europe,  together  with  Christianity  and  civ- 
ilization, by  the  Catholic  Church,  that  in  several  languages  a 
learned  man  and  clergyman  are  synonymous.  Cleric  in  Anglo- 
Saxon,  clerk  in  English,  and  clej^c  in  French,  are  instances,  a  fact 
which  the  Kultur-kampf  \w  Prussia  and  the  anti-clericals  in  France 
seem  sublimely  to  ignore. 

If  Latin  and  her  daughter  French  have,  according  to  Webster, 
given  four-fifths  of  its  borrowed  words  to  the  English  language,  and 
if  we  take  his  word  for  it,  as  I  think  we  may,  that  "if  all  the  words 
in  a  large  English  dictionary  were  classed  according  to  their  ori- 
gin, it  would  appear  that  the  foreign  or  non-Saxon  words  make  a 
decided  majority  of  the  whole  number,"  we  can  easily  calculate 
the  indebtedness  of  the  English  language  to  Latin  and  the  indebt- 
edness of  all  who  use  it  to  the  Catholic  Church.     In  Milton's  poet- 


1 62  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

ical  works  about  two-thirds  of  the  vocabulary  are  foreign,  which 
shows  how  much  we  owe  both  for  matter  and  form  to  that  Church 
which  he  so  heartily  berated  with  his  bitterest  invective.  But 
this  is  not  so  strange  for  one  who  shone  in  the  golden  age  of  the 
"  Reformation,"  when  in  this,  its  last  age, 

"  Cui  non  invenit  ipsa 
Nomen,  et  a  nullo  posuit  Natura  metallo," 

"  Nature  cannot  frame 
A  metal  base  enough  to  give  it  name," 

we  hear  G.  P.  Marsh  lecture  to  post-graduates  in  Columbia  Col- 
lege, N  Y.,  in  this  strain  :  "  The  Romish  Church,  too,  in  England, 
as  everywhere  else,  was  hostile  to  all  intellectual  effort  which  in 
any  degree  diverged  from  the  path  marked  out  by  ecclesiastical 
habit  and  tradition,  and  very  many  important  English  benefices 
were  filled  by  foreign  priests  quite  ignorant  of  the  English  tongue." 
Indeed!  Why,  without  just  such  foreign  influence  the  English 
tongue  had  remained  the  barbarous  jargon  the  Catholic  Church 
first  found  it,  and  the  English  people  the  savages  Caesar  and  Taci- 
tus describe  them.  If  by  "  intellectual  effort "  is  meant  the  at- 
tempt to  palm  off  some  counterfeit  article  for  genuine  truth,  whether 
in  the  natural  or  supernatural  order,  in  philosophy  or  theology, 
science  or  history,  the  Church  has  always  set  her  face  against  it, 
is  professedly,  irreconcilably,  necessarily  hostile  to  it,  because  she 
is  the  "  pillar  and  ground  of  truth."  For  **  what  fellowship  hath 
light  with  darkness  ?  "  Chameleon-like  or  Proteus-like,  error  may 
assume  a  new  color  or  a  new  form  at  every  new  moon,  may  defend 
itself  behind  the  rampart  of  power  and  fashion  and  talent,  may 
lurk  in  the  labyrinths  of  pretended  science,  the  Catholic  Church 
pursues  it,  dismantles  it,  exposes  and  throttles  it.  To  every 
"  Eirenicon  "  her  answer  is  "  Peace  through  the  Truth."  From 
Gnosticism  to  Agnosticism,  from  Arianism  to  the  last  phase  of 
Protestantism^  Rationalism,  there  is  not  a  single  error  of  any  note 
that  has  not  felt  her  implacable  hostility. 

And  yet  Mr.  Marsh  is  frank  enough  to  make  the  following 
statement  in  another  lecture  of  the  same  series :  "  The  missionary 
who  goes  armed  with  the  cross,  not  with  the  sword,  must  use  a 

speech  intelligible  to  those  whom  he  would  convert The 

Gothic  tribes  generally  were  brought  to  Christianity  by  arguments 
and  persuasions  addressed  to  them  by  ministers  speaking  to  every 
man  in  his  own  tongue."  Every  word  of  this  is  luminous  with 
truth,  if  all  be  substituted  for  "  generally,"  and  if  the  interference 
of  miracles  on  some  occasions,  and  of  supernatural  divine  grace 
on  all  occasions,  be  superadded  to  the  "  arguments  and   persua- 

W/taf  the  Languages  Ozve  to  the  Catholic  Church.        163 

sions  "  as  prime  factors  in  Christianizing  and  civilizing  not  alone 
the  Gothic  tribes,  but  all  the  nations  that  have  yet  been  civilized. 
To  call  Pagan  enlightenment,  with  its  revolting  ritual  and  low 
moral  status,  civilization,  shocks  all  sense.  "  Corrumpere  et  cor- 
rumpi  saeculum  vocatur,"  is  the  vouchment  of  Tacitus  regarding 
Roman  virtue  and  propriety  in  his  day. 

But  if  the  lecturer  means  that  the  Catholic  Church  has  ever 
been  hostile  to  any  department  of  genuine  science,  arts,  or  letters, 
the  history  of  the  literature  of  every  country,  and  of  the  intel- 
lectual development  of  every  people,  gives  him  the  lie.  Roger 
Bacon  is  a  fair  specimen  of  the  circumscribed  limits  imposed 
upon  "  intellectual  effort  "  in  schools  established  by  the  Catholic 
Church  in  those  benighted  Middle  Ages.  His  writings  that  are 
still  preserved,  of  which  the  principal  is  that  entitled  his  "  Opus 
Majus  "  (or  '*  Great  Work  "),  show  that  the  range  of  his  investigations 
included  theology,  grammar,  the  ancient  languages,  geometry,  as- 
tronomy, chronology,  geography,  music,  optics,  mechanics,  chem- 
istry, and  most  of  the  other  branches  of  experimental  philosophy. 
"  In  all  these  sciences,"  writes  Mr.  Craik,  "  he  had  mastered  what- 
ever was  then  known  ;  and  his  knowledge,  though  necessarily 
mixed  with  much  error,  extended  in  various  directions  consider- 
ably farther  than,  but  for  the  evidence  of  his  writings,  we  should 
have  been  warranted  in  believing  that  scientific  researches  had 
been  carried  in  that  age."  It  is  well  known  that  his  writings  an- 
ticipate the  discovery  of  the  telescope,  and  that  he  was  acquainted 
with  the  effects  and  composition  of  gunpowder ;  but  it  may  not 
be  equally  well  known  that  it  was  at  the  suggestion  of  Pope 
Clement  IV.  that  he  gave  to  the  world  his  "  Opus  Majus,"  so  hostile 
was  the  Church  from  head  to  foot,  then  as  now,  to  liberal  educa- 
tion, to  freedom  of  intellect. 

We  will  now  take  an  example  of  the  extent  of  learning  on  the 
Continent  in  those  days,  and  this  from  the  Dominicans,  as  our 
last  was  from  the  Franciscans,  two  of  the  teaching  orders  of  the 
Catholic  Church.  "  Albertus  Magnus,"  says  Humboldt,  "was 
equally  active  and  influential  in  promoting  the  study  of  natural 
science  and  of  the  Aristotelian  philosophy His  works  con- 
tain exceedingly  acute  remarks  on  the  organic  structure  and 
physiology  of  plants.  One  of  his  works,  bearing  the  title  of 
Liber  Cosmographicus  dc  Natura  Locorum,  is  a  species  of  physical 
geography.  I  have  found  in  it  considerations  on  the  dependence 
of  temperature  concurrently  on  latitude  and  elevation,  and  on  the 
effect  of  different  angles  of  incidence  of  the  sun's  rays  in  heating 
the  ground,  which  have  excited  my  surprise." 

Jourdain  says  of  him  :  "  Whether  we  consider  him  as  a  theolo- 
gian  or  a  philosopher,  Albert  was  undoubtedly  one  of  the  most 

164  Atnencan  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

extraordinary  men  of  his  age ;  I  might  say,  one  of  the  most 
wonderful  men  of  genius  that  have  appeared  in  past  time."  The 
Church  has  reared  a  goodly  number  of  such  men  in  every  age, 
and  still  rears  them,  and  will  continue  to  rear  them ;  for  she  is 
to-day  as  radiant  in  youth  and  beauty  and  vigor  as  when  she  came 
forth,  with  the  Pentecostal  blessing  on  her  brow,  to  regenerate  the 
world,  the  fruitful  Mother  of  heroic  virtue  and  profound  learning, 
of  saints  and  savants. 

Thus  again  speaks  M.  Meyer  of  Albertus :  "  No  botanist  who 
lived  before  Albert  can  be  compared  to  him,  unless  it  be  Theo- 
phrastus,  with  whom  he  was  not  acquainted ;  and  after  him  none 
has  painted  nature  in  such  living  colors,  or  studied  it  so  pro- 
foundly, until  the  time  of  Conrad,  Gesner,  and  Cesalpini.  All 
honor,  then,  to  the  man  who  made  such  astonishing  progress  in  the 
science  of  nature  as  to  find  no  one,  I  will  not  say  to  surpass,  but 
even  to  equal  him  for  the  space  of  three  hundred  years." 

Albert  himself  says  of  his  book  on  botany :  "  All  that  is  here 
set  down  is  the  result  of  our  own  experience,  or  has  been  borrowed 
from  authors  whom  we  know  to  have  written  what  their  personal 
experience  has  confirmed;  for  in  these  matters  experience  alone 
can  give  certainty."  This  shows  that  Albert  was  not  alone  in  his 
devotion  to  the  natural  sciences,  and  that  experimental  sciences 
did  not  originate  with  Francis  Bacon.  It  also  shows  that,  if 
such  was  the  proficiency,  under  the  fostering  care  of  the  Church, 
of  intellectual  effort  in  departments  most  remote  from  sciences 
that  have  direct  relation  to  mental  operations,  and  consequently 
from  immediate  bearing  upon  language,  the  Church  must  have 
exerted  on  language  a  cumulative  influence  that  can  be  calculated 
only  by  estimating  the  immense  impetus  she  gave  and  continues 
to  give  to  the  arts  and  sciences  individually. 

It  is  well  known  that  all  the  great  schools  and  universities  of 
Europe  between  the  2d  and  17th  centuries  were  the  creation  of 
the  Catholic  Church.  In  the  famous  school  of  Alexandria,  founded 
by  St.  Mark  the  Evangelist,  we  find,  as  early  as  23i,Origen,  pupil 
and  successor  of  Clement,  teaching  St.  Gregory  and  his  brother 
Athenodorus  "  logic,  in  order  to  exercise  their  minds  and  enable 
them  to  discover  true  reasoning  from  sophistry ;  physics,  that  they 
might  understand  and  admire  the  works  of  God;  geometry, 
which  by  its  clear  and  indisputable  demonstrations  serves  as  a 
basis  to  the  science  of  thought ;  astronomy,  to  lift  their  hearts 
from  earth  to  heaven  ;  and  finally,  philosophy,  which  was  not 
limited,  like  that  taught  in  the  pagan  schools,  to  empty  specula- 
tions, but  was  conveyed  in  such  a  way  as  to  lead  to  practical  re- 
sults. All  these  were  but  steps  to  ascend  to  that  higher  science 
which  teaches  us  the  existence  and  nature  of  God.     He  permitted 

U'Tiat  the  Languages  Ozve  to  the  Catholic  Qmrch.        165 

his  pupils  freely  to  read  whatever  the  poets  and  philosophers  had 
written  on  this  subject,  himself  watching  and  directing  their 
studies,  and  opening  their  eyes  to  distinguish  those  sparks  of 
truth  which  are  to  be  found  scattered  in  the  writings  of  the  pagans, 
however  overlaid  by  a  mass  of  fable." 

There  does  not  appear  much  circumscribing  of  "intellectual 
effort"  here.  It  was  encouraged,  like  the  bee,  to  gather  the 
honey  of  truth  from  every  flower  in  every  art  and  science.  Well 
does  Augusta  T.  Drane  remark  on  this  :  "  The  real  point  worth 
observing  is,  that  every  branch  of  human  knowledge,  in  so  far  as 
it  had  been  cultivated  at  that  time,  was  included  in  the  studies  of 
the  Christian  schools  ;  and,  considering  that  this  had  been  the 
work  of  scarcely  more  than  two  centuries,  and  those  centuries  of 
bloody  persecution,  it  must  be  acknowledged  to  have  been  a  tol- 
erably expansive  growth." 

Yes,  "  growth  "  was  stamped  on  every  feature  of  human  learn- 
ing under  the  generous  patronage  of  the  Catholic  Church,  until  it 
established  its  great  centres  in  the  universities  of  Paris,  Ox- 
ford, Cambridge,  Bologna,  Padua,  Pisa,  Louvain,  etc.  Of  the 
"  growth  "  of  one  of  these,  Oxford,  from  the  day  it  was  plundered 
by  the  "  Reformation  "  to  our  own  day.  Sir  William  Hamilton 
writes :  "  Oxford  is,  of  all  academical  institutions,  at  once  the 
most  imperfect  and  the  most  perfectible.  'Stat  magni  nominis 
umbra!  " 

We  grant  that  the  Catholic  Church  prescribes  limits  to  thought, 
and  says  to  the  most  towering  genius  or  daring  intellect,  Thus  far 
and  no  farther ;  but  it  is  such  check  as  reason  herself  imposes  on 
such  trespassers  upon  her  domain  as  Mill,  Fiske,  and  other 
agnostics,  who  claim  that  two  and  two  may  possibly  make 
five,  that  truth  is  relative,  that  all  that  is  unknowable  which  they 
cannot  or  do  not  comprehend,  and  such  like  absurdities.  The 
Church  has  ever  encouraged  free  thought  until  it  has  ceased  to  be 
reasonable,  has  rewarded  intellectual  effort  so  long  as  it  has  not 
become  suicidal.  Who  has  investigated  the  most  abstruse  prob- 
lems within  the  range  of  human  thought  more  freely,  fearlessly,  or 
profoundly  than  St.  Augustine  and  St.  Thomas  ?  That  Copernicus 
and  Secchi  were  priests,  did  not  hinder  them  from  attaining  their 
prominent  place  in  science.  The  divinely-appointed  infallible 
teacher  of  nations  had  too  strong,  too  passionate  a  love  for  truth  to 
allow  any  counterfeit  impostor  to  usurp  its  honored  place  in  the 
minds  of  men,  under  the  specious  name  of  philosophy  or  science. 
She  knew  beforehand  the  tough  combat  she  had  to  enter  with 
proud  intellect  wedded  to  cherished  error,  both  in  the  service  of  a 
host  of  passions,  and  flattered  by  wealth,  power,  pomp  and  fashion. 
But,  conscious  of  her  strength,  aided  from  on   high,  defended  by 

1 66  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

truth  while  defending  it,  her  motto  has  ever  been,  Magna  est  Veri- 
tas, ct  prcevalebit.  From  Gnosticism  and  Neoplatonism  in  the 
Second  and  following  centuries,  to  Agnosticism  and  Evolutionism 
in  the  19th,  her  career  has  been  one  of  conflict  and  of  triumph.  As 
Dr.  Molloy  tells  us  that  he  studied  geology  profoundly,  in  order  to 
meet  objections  to  revealed  truth  from  that  quarter,  so  St.  Thomas 
studied  Aristotle  to  meet  Averroes  on  his  own  ground,  proving  as 
plain  as  two  and  two  make  four  the  absurdity  of  holding  that  all 
men  have  but  one  common  intellect,  the  grand  doctrine  of  the 
Arabian,  whom  his  free-thinking  contemporaries  styled  "  the  Com- 
mentator." This  is  the  secret  of  the  Church's  devotedness  to 
learning  of  every  kind,  always  inculcating  by  word  and  example 
what  one  of  her  brightest  ornaments  has  laid  down  in  his  world- 
wide wondrous  little  book  :  *'  Learning  is  not  to  be  blamed,  nor 
the  mere  knowledge  of  anything,  which  is  good  in  itself,  and  or- 
dained by  God ;  but  a  good  conscience  and  a  virtuous  life  are 
always  to  be  preferred  before  it." 

Not  alone  must  the  Ecclesia  doc  ens  be  learned,  the  Ecclesia  cre- 
dens,  all  the  faithful,  are  exhorted  to  be  "  always  ready  to  satisfy 
every  one  that  asketh  you  a  reason  of  that  hope  which  is  in  you." 
"Join  with  your  faith,  virtue  ;  and  with  virtue,  knowledge."  Hence 
a  good  Catholic  will  be  ashamed  not  to  be  able  to  give  a  reason- 
able answer  to  any  reasonable  question  about  his  faith.  Unrea- 
sonable questions  deserve  no  answer ;  but  may  be  shown  to  be 
unreasonable,  or  met  with  a  smile  of  pity.  Even  illiterate,  earnest 
Catholics  have  been  found  learned  enough  to  give  ample  satisfac- 
tion to  sincere  inquirers,  from  their  diligence  in  attending  all  the 
instructions  of  their  pastors,  whether  in  catechism  or  in  sermons, 
missions,  etc. 

Now,  general  culture  of  the  arts  and  sciences,  which  the  Church 
has  always  encouraged  and  promoted,  and  in  which  her  children 
have  always  excelled,  must  necessarily  tend  to  improve  the  several 
languages.  There  is  so  close  a  connection  between  thought  and 
its  expression,  the  idea  and  the  word,  the  signified  and  the  sign, 
that  the  expansion,  refinement,  and  elevation  of  the  former  are  in- 
variably attended,  or  followed,  by  a  corresponding  effect  upon  the 
latter.  The  enlightened  mind  ever  finds  a  fluent  tongue  or  ready 
pen,  verifying  the  saying  attributed  to  Socrates  :  "  He  is  eloquent 
enough  who  knows  his  subject  well  enough."  This  is  also  a  con- 
vincing proof  that,  with  the  gift  of  high  intelligence,  language  was 
originally  given  to  man  directly  by  his  bountiful  Creator.  Think- 
ing cannot  go  far,  nor  deep,  nor  high,  without  its  natural  helpmate, 
language,  as  any  one  may  find  by  experiment.  Neither  can  lan- 
guage travel  alone  without  intelligence,  which  called  it  into  being, 
and  which  preserves  its  being  by  recognizing  its  significance.    Lan- 

What  the  Languages  Owe  to  the  Catholic  Church.        167 

guage  is  for  intelligence,  not  intelligence  for  language ;  and  hence 
language  may  be  dispensed  with  in  certain  cases,  intelligence  never. 
Language  is  necessary,  because  society  is  necessary.  The  Creator 
founded  society  by  creating  the  family :  He  also  gave  it  what  it 
absolutely  wants,  language.  Humboldt  says  that,  if  we  accept 
not  this,  he  knows  of  no  explanation  of  the  origin  of  that  which 
is  coeval  and  co-extensive  with  society.  Upon  this  necessary  con- 
nection between  intelligence  and  language  have  I  rested  the  above 
statement,  that,  but  for  the  superior  intelligence  of  the  members 
of  the  Catholic  Church,  both  lay  and  clerical,  especially  her  Re- 
ligious Orders,  the  three  learned  languages,  Hebrew,  Greek,  and 
Latin,  had  long  since  lain  buried  in  oblivion.  How  could  the  bar- 
barian hordes  from  the  North,  Vandals,  Goths,  Huns,  etc.,  appre- 
ciate what  they  could  not  understand  ?  Their  inutility  had  been 
their  death-warrant.  All  had  shared  the  fate  of  the  Alexandrian 
library  had  it  not  been  for  the  monks  and  churchmen  of  the  Middle 
Ages,  whose  unwearied  toil  some  are  too  enlightened  to  recognize. 

The  influence  of  the  Church  upon  the  various  languages  has 
been  exercised  in  yet  another  way,  which  we  are  apt  to  overlook  ; 
we  mean  the  nice  precision  and  wonderful  exactness  of  her  official 
statements  in  all  her  doctrines.  Like  her  Divine  Founder,  the 
Church  never  has  "  It  is  and  it  is  not"  in  her  teaching.  She  has 
never  need  of  issuing  a  revised  edition  of  her  former  pronounce- 
ments. The  Pillar  and  Ground  of  Truth,  she  stamps  the  pure  gold 
of  truth  with  her  infallible  signet,  and  there  it  remains  truth  for 
aye,  unchangeable  and  imperishable  as  its  Infinite  Source.  The 
word  that  is  to  be  admitted  as  the  sign  of  this  truth,  the  silver 
casket  for  the  golden  gem,  is  also  nicely  weighed,  adjusted  with 
all  accuracy,  and  sent  forth  on  its  errand  under  no  mistakable 
colors.  It  is  the  same  word  for  the  same  idea,  and  the  same  idea 
for  the  same  truth,  thenceforth  ever  after  as  long  as  there  are  people 
to  use  that  language.  So  precious  is  truth  in  her  estimation  that 
she  condescends  to  examine  in  minutest  detail  every  word,  and 
every  letter  and  accent  in  every  word,  as  in  homoousios  and  homoi- 
ousios  {d/joovacoc;  and  dfioiovGutg),  theotokos  and  theotokos  {QeojoKoq  and 
QtoroKoq),  marking  the  notable  difference  a  letter  or  an  accent  may 
make  in  the  truth  conveyed. 

Now  this  carefulness  and  exactness  in  the  use  of  words  extend 
through  the  whole  domain  of  theology  and  philosophy.  Words 
are  not  allowed  to  run  slipshod  under  a  haze  of  indefiniteness. 
Every  pastor  of  souls,  every  priest  empowered  by  her  authority 
to  preach  the  divine  word,  every  writer  who  touches  upon  sub- 
jects connected  with  the  sacred  deposit  committed  to  her  keepmg, 
must  be  severely  on  his  guard  in  the  use  of  words,  that  he  may 
not   come  under    her    merciless    censures.       Hence    the  various 

i6S  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

languages  throughout  the  civilized  world  are  made  the  special 
study  of  a  large  number  of  close  students  in  the  most  perfect 
languages  of  all  times.  The  result  is  a  habit  of  exact  thinking 
and  apt  expression,  than  which  no  greater  gain  can  accrue  to 
language.  It  was  the  want  of  this  that  Socrates  charged  so 
pointedly  against  the  Sophists  of  his  day.  Indefiniteness  of  ex- 
pression is  always  the  shuffling  contrivance  of  sophistry.  Some, 
too,  that  abhor  sophistry  are  under  the  mistaken  notion  that 
repeating  the  same  word  in  the  same  sentence,  or,  if  it  can  pos- 
sibly be  avoided,  even  in  the  same  paragraph,  argues  a  dearth  in 
one's  vocabulary,  lack  of  skill  in  arrangement,  or  of  taste  to 
appreciate  the  charms  of  novelty.  Such  persons  should  never 
wear  a  second  time,  during  the  same  month  or  year,  the  same 
coat,  or  hat,  or  shoes,  lest  they  be  convicted  of  poverty ;  nor  drink 
coffee  again  till  they  have  gone  the  rounds  of  all  possible  bever- 

If  the  idea  is  good,  i.e.,  exactly  represents  its  object,  and  the 
word  exactly  fits  the  idea,  no  other  word  should  be  allowed  to 
take  its  place.  The  surpassing  beauty  of  truth  shines  forth 
through  every  word  that  is  an  exact  counterpart  of  the  idea, 
when  this  idea  is  in  perfect  conformity  with  its  object.  This  con- 
formity is  found  in  infinite  perfection  in  the  Verbum  Sternum,  a 
conformity  so  unutterably  perfect  that  all  the  beauty,  goodness, 
and  excellence  of  the  Father  is  seen  expressed  in  the  "  Figure  of 
His  Substance  and  the  Splendor  of  His  Glory,"  an  absolute  one- 
ness of  nature  and  perfections  being  common  to  the  three  Ador- 
able Persons  of  the  August  Trinity. 

And  here,  again,  the  Fathers  and  Doctors  of  the  Catholic 
Church,  in  expounding  to  the  extent  of  human  capacity  the  grand 
mysteries  of  our  holy  faith,  have  poured  a  sea  of  light  upon  many 
important  and  abtruse  questions  connected  with  the  philosophy  of 
the  human  mind,  its  faculties,  and  their  operations.  For,  as  the 
soul  of  man  is  made  to  the  image  of  God,  there  must  be  an 
analogy,  faint  though  it  necessarily  be,  between  the  eternal  simple 
operation  in  the  Trinity,  which  operation  our  complex  nature 
must  contemplate  as  multiple,  and  the  manifold  operations  of  our 
several  faculties.  Thus  the  light  of  faith,  enlightening  instead  of 
extinguishing  the  light  of  reason,  enables  man  to  see  the  simili- 
tude betw^een  the  Divine  Word  and  our  verbtini  mentale,  which 
mental  word  true  philosophy  discovers  in  every  act  of  intellection, 
in  the  completion  of  every  idea.  Every  idea  implies  an  intellect 
knowing  and  an  object  known.  The  Divine  Intellect,  as  being 
infinite,  must  necessarily  be  active,  and  consequently  must  have 
an  infinite  object,  which  object  is  the  Divine  Nature  or  Essence,  in- 
finite being,  infinite  reality.     Faith  tells  us  that  this  Infinite  Nature, 

What  the  Languages  Owe  to  the  Catholic  Church.        169 

one  and  indivisible,  is  equally  possessed  by  three  Divine  Persons, 
perfectly  distinct  and  perfectly  equal,  the  Father,  the  Son,  and 
the  Holy  Ghost.  Reason,  also,  shows  us  in  our  own  minds  in  every 
act  of  intellection  an  image  of  this  trinity  in  unity.  The  object 
known  is  one  and  the  same  to  the  intellect  that  knows,  the  idea 
through  which  it  knows,  and  the  affection  or  emotion  consequent 
upon  this  knowledge.  It  is  the  same  soul  that  knows  as  intellect, 
that  is  modified  as  idea,  that  is  affected  or  moved  by  such  knowl- 
edge and  such  modification.  The  intellect  that  knows,  in  the  idea 
through  which  it  knows,  knows  also  itself;  for  the  idea  is  the  in- 
tellect modified.  Known  thus,  the  intellect  knows  itself  in  act, 
which  knowledge  is  often  expressed  by  the  formula.  We  know 
that  we  know.  This  is  properly  an  act  of  consciousness,  the 
vaguest  of  vague  terms  in  the  hands  of  many  recent  writers, 
especially  Agnostics,  which,  however,  is  nothing  else  than  intel- 
lect cognizing  itself  and  its  own  and  the  mind's  present  state. 
Knowing  that  it  knows,  the  intellect  affirms  or  expresses  to  itself 
this  knowledge,  which  expression  is  called  mental  word,  verbiim 
mentale,  in  relation  to  the  mind,  idea  in  relation  to  the  object  it 
represents.  This  idea  or  mental  word  is  begotten  of  the  intellect 
in  conjunction  with  the  object  known  or  mentally  conceived,  and, 
hence,  is  sometimes  called  concept.  It  may  also  be  called  the 
offspring  of  the  intellect,  though  not  of  it  alone,  man  being  essen- 
tially dependent  not  alone  on  his  Creator,  but  on  creatures  also, 
for  every  act  of  every  faculty.  This  offspring  exists  as  soon  as 
intellect  is  called  into  act  or  exists  in  act. 

These  facts,  which  a  moment's  reflection  upon  our  own  mental 
activity  makes  evident,  will  enable  us  to  understand  a  little,  very 
little,  to  be  sure,  but  still  some  little,  of  what  faith  teaches  us  with 
absolute  certainty  regarding  the  first  and  greatest  of  mysteries.  The 
Father,  Infinite  Intelligence,  knowing  Himself,  expresses  this 
knowledge  to  Himself,  and  thus  begets  His  Eternal  Son,  the  Ver- 
bum  Divinum,  who,  because  of  the  infinite  perfection  of  that  knowl- 
edge, is  a  subsisting  personality,  the  very  *'  figure  of  the  Father's 
substance  and  the  splendor  of  His  glory,"  at  once  infinitely  known 
and  infinitely  knowing.  This  Verbum  was  conceived  or  begotten 
of  the  Father  before  all  ages,  i.e.  eternally,  because  from  eternity 
as  necessarily  existing  as  the  Father  is  necessarily  knowing;  and, 
because  so  generated  and  so  existing,  is  called  the  Eternal  Son  of 
God.  The  Son  is  necessary  as  the  Father  is  necessary.  Even  so 
is  our  mental  word  necessary  to  every  act  of  intellection,  and  exists 
as  soon  as  intellect  exists  in  act.  Our  oral  word  is  but  the  out- 
ward manifestation  of  the  mental  word.  This  we  are  free  to  utter 
or  not,  as  we  please.  God,  too,  was  free  to  create  or  not  to  create 
the  universe  and  all  it  contains,  which  may  be  called  His  eternal 

lyo  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

word,  *'  Cceli  enarrant  gloriam  Dei''  as  also  to  utter  his  revealed 
word.  But  all  that  he  has  outwardly  expressed,  whether  by  crea- 
tion or  by  revelation.  He  eternally  expressed  in  the  Uncreated 
Word,  the  Coeternal  Son;  "and  without  Him  was  made  nothing 
that  was  made." 

It  is  a  mistake  to  suppose,  as  some  do,  that  the  oral  word  ex- 
presses the  object  directly  and  immediately.  It  is  by  expressing 
the  mental  word  or  idea,  which  represents  the  object,  that  the  oral 
word  expresses  also  the  object. 

In  thus  tracing  the  analogy  between  the  Divine  Mind  and  our 
mind,  besides  the  incomparable  distance  between  the  infinite  and 
the  finite,  in  every  particular,  the  following  are  noteworthy  points 
of  difference.  Created  entities  depend  for  their  existence  upon 
their  prototypes  or  the  exemplar  ideas  of  them  in  the  Divine  Mind, 
which  are  the  measure  of  existences.  Our  ideas  depend  for  their 
existence  upon  created  entities,  and  are  measured  by  them.  Cre- 
ated entities  exist  in  consequence  of  the  Divine  ideas  of  them.  Our 
ideas  exist  in  consequence  of  created  entities  existing.  In  con- 
forming our  ideas  to  existing  created  entities,  which  are  all  con- 
formed to  their  prototypes  in  the  Divine  Mind,  we  are  so  far  being 
conformed  to  the  Divine  Mind.  But  as  everything  in  the  Divine 
Mind  is  perfection,  we  are  by  the  same  conformity  tending  to  per- 
fection, at  least  intellectually.  Therefore  the  proper  use  of  our 
faculties  in  attaining  truth  leads  to  God,  the  Fountain  of  all  truth, 
being  led  through  creatures  "from  Nature  up  to  Nature's  God." 
Hence  the  pursuit  of  learning  is  a  laudable  one.  Every  entity  is 
at  once  true  and  good,  reminding  us  of  the  infinite  Ocean  of  Truth 
and  Goodness  whence  it  issued.  If,  therefore,  our  will  follows 
right  reason  in  loving  the  good,  every  act  of  knowing  is  accom- 
panied or  followed  by  an  act  of  loving  the  Infinite  Good,  and  "  to 
them  that  love  God  all  things  work  together  unto  good." 

Since  words  are  arbitrary  signs,  having  no  natural  connection 
with  the  ideas  signified,  it  is  a  strange  whim  that  has  led  certain 
parties  to  claim  a  vast  superiority  for  words  of  Saxon  origin  over 
other  derivatives  in  the  English  language.  It  is  of  a  piece  with 
"  There  is  no  spot  on  earth  like  the  land  of  my  birth."  That  there 
is  more  force  or  terseness  in  Anglo-Saxon  than  in  Anglo-Latin 
words  is  negatived  by  the  fact  that,  in  some  of  the  choicest  and 
most  vigorous  writings  in  the  English  language,  such  as  Junius's 
Letters,  Johnson's  Letter  to  Lord  Chesterfield,  Burke's  masterpiece, 
the  Latin  element  largely  predominates  ;  and  that  they  possess 
more  sweetness,  harmony  or  beauty,  some  of  the  best  poetry  in  the 
language,  such  as  Milton's  and  Lord  Byron's,  equally  denies.  We 
do  not  stop  at  the  sign  ;  we  go  to  what  it  signifies.  It  would  take 
a  Herbert  Spencer  to  see  **  the  greater  forcibleness  of  Saxon-Eng- 

What  the  Lajtguages  Owe  to  the  Catholic  Church.        171 

lish,  or  rather  non-Latin  English,"  or  the  economy  of  using 
''  original  words  used  in  childhood,"  making  it  preferable  to 
'*  have  "  than  to  ''possess,''  to  "  wish  "  than  to  "  desire,''  to  "  ihi7ik  " 
than  to  "  reflect,"  to  have  **  play  "  than  "  aimiseinerit,"  etc.  No  mat- 
ter whence,  or  how,  or  when  a  word  came  into  reputable  use,  if  it 
expresses  the  idea  clearly  and  fully,  it  is  ridiculous  childishness 
to  put  it  aside  in  deference  to  any  other.  Give  us  the  writer  or 
speaker  that  has  clear  thoughts,  something  worth  communicating, 
and  holds  out  to  us  unmistakable  signs  through  which  we  can  at 
once  grasp  his  whole  meaning,  and  we  care  not  if  they  are  mono- 
syllabic or  sesquipedalian,  indigenous  or  exotic,  idiomatic  or  im- 
ported, old  or  new.  Refusing  a  well-fitting  word  because. of  its 
origin,  is  like  refusing  to  be  clothed  in  an  excellent  garment  on 
the  plea  that  the  material  of  which  it  is  made  is  the  product  of  a 
foreign  soil.  The  writer  or  speaker  should  choose  that  word 
which,  by  common  consent,  has  become  the  recognized  sign  of  his 
idea,  on  receipt  of  which  the  hearer  or  reader  forms  in  his  own 
mind  the  corresponding  idea.  Thus  the  two  minds  are  so  far  at 
one,  being  conformed  to  the  same  sign,  the  one  matching  the  sign 
to  his  idea,  the  other  matching  his  idea  to  the  sign,  and  conse- 
quently represent  to  themselves  the  same  identical  object. 

We  are  too  near  the  utmost  limits  of  a  review  article  to  even 
touch  upon  some  of  the  many  philological  vagaries  put  forth  as 
theories  regarding  the  progressive  development  of  words  from  the 
original  inarticulate  chattering  of  the  autochthonous  pre-human 
miitiini peciis,  Darwin's  progenitors,  to  our  inimitable  nonpareil,  "  the 
well  of  English  undefiled."  Their  first  principle,  that  savagery 
was  man's  primeval  state,  then  barbarism,  enlightenment,  and  finally 
culture,  culminating  in  science,  is  one  of  those  assumptions  of 
Necessary  Frogressionism  which  laughs  at  the  idea  of  verification 
by  anything  in  the  past  or  present,  its  all-sufficiency  being  suffi- 
ciently guaranteed  by  its  adoption  by  the  Evolutionists.  It  counts 
nothing  that  the  best  poet,  the  best  orator,  one  of  the  best  philoso- 
phers, the  best  sculptor,  and  the  best  painter,  ever  trumpeted  by 
fame,  flourished  from  twenty-eight  to  twenty-two  centuries  ago. 
A  thousand  years  are  as  one  day  to  Progress !  .  Their  second 
principle,  that  all  words  have  come  from  monosyllabic  roots,  is  re- 
buked by  nearly  every  word  in  the  American  Indian's  vocabulary. 
Monosyllabic  words  being  first  in  use,  and  men  being  first  savages, 
according  to  these  wise  men,  it  follows  that  the  language  of  savages 
should  be  monosyllabic.  Therefore,  Minnesota,  Minnehaha,  Mis- 
sissippi, Missouri  and  Chicago  are  monosyllables.  Philology! 
How  wonderfully  prolific! 

172  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

g^rientific  OTljronicle. 


In  the  '^Chronicle"  for  last  January  we  noticed  the  announcement 
made  by  Mr.  Edison  of  a  new  and  more  perfect  form  of  his  phonograph. 
Since  then,  the  details  of  the  new  instrument  have  been  made  public. 
Moreover,  two  other  perfected  forms  of  the  same  invention  have  been 
brought  forward  by  rival  inventors.  The  first  of  these  is  the  Grapho- 
phone  of  Mr.  Charles  Sumner  Tainter,  a  gentleman  already  well  known 
as  Mr.  Bell's  associate  in  some  of  the  latter's  most  interesting  investi- 
gations. The  sec6nd  is  the  Gramophone  devised  by  Mr.  Emile  Berliner, 
who  has  won  fame  and  fortune  by  originating  the  secondary  circuit  sys- 
tem of  telephonic  communication  now  in  universal  use.  In  all  essen- 
tial particulars,  Edison's  and  Tainter's  instruments  are  almost  identical. 
Their  object  is  to  record  the  vibrations  of  articulate  speech,  and  to  re- 
produce the  sounds  at  any  future  period,  avoiding,  at  the  same  time,  the 
defects  of  Edison's  first  phonograph.  These  defects  consisted  chiefly 
in  a  want  of  distinctness  in  the  articulation  of  the  reproduced  sounds. 
This  defect  was  so  great  that  it  was  almost  impossible  to  understand  the 
reproduction  unless  the  original  sounds  had  been  heard  by  the  listener. 
Some  consonants,  too,  were  much  less  perfectly  recorded  than  others. 
These  imperfections  were  due  to  the  intractable  nature  of  the  tin-foil 
used  for  receiving  the  indentations,  and  to  the  fact  that  the  same  dia- 
phragm was  employed  both  for  receiving  and  reproducing  the  sounds. 
Moreover,  the  great  delicacy  of  adjustment  needed  in  the  original  in- 
strument made  its  results  very  unsatisfactory,  except  in  the  hands  of  an 
expert  manipulator.  In  remedying  these  defects,  none  of  the  rival  in- 
ventors have  made  so  radical  a  departure  from  the  principle  of  the  first 
phonograph  as  that  suggested  by  the  writer  of  our  ''Chronicle"  for 
January.  The  suggestion  there  advanced  is,  that  the  voice  be  made  to 
put  in  vibration  a  diaphragm  which  should  cause  small  holes  to  be  punc- 
tured in  a  sheet,  metallic  or  otherwise,  in  a  way  similar  to  those  made 
by  the  electric  pen.  Then  a  current  of  air  passed  through  these  holes 
successively  would  reproduce  the  sounds.  This  method  seems  worthy 
of  trial.  But  Edison  and  Tainter  have  adhered  strictly  to  the  outlines 
of  the  original  phonograph.  A  cylinder  coated  with  a  specially  pre- 
pared and  hardened  wax,  in  place  of  the  older  tin-foil,  is  revolved  by  a 
small  electric  motor,  or  other  means  giving  uniform  motion.  Just  above 
the  cylinder,  a  diaphragm  is  supported  which  holds,  on  its  lower  surface, 
a  cutting  blade  instead  of  the  needle  of  the  old  instrument.  When  the 
mouthpiece  is  spoken  into,  the  vibrations  of  the  diaphragm  cause  the 
blade  to  cut  into  the  wax  surface  of  the  revolving  cylinder.  At  the 
same  time,  by  means  of  a  screw,  the  diaphragm  is  advanced  slowly  in  a 

Scientific  Chronicle.  17^ 

direction  parallel  to  the  length  of  the  cylinder.  The  sound  vibrations 
are  thus  recorded  on  the  wax,  in  spiral  lines,  in  the  form  of  minute  in- 
dentations. To  reproduce  the  sound,  the  receiving  diaphragm  is  re- 
placed by  one  of  much  lighter  material,  bearing  a  light  needle  that  rests 
delicately  upon  the  indentations  cut  in  the  wax.  As  the  cylinder  is 
again  made  to  revolve,  the  point  of  this  needle  passes  over  the  former 
path  made  by  the  cutting  blade,  and  its  diaphragm  consequently  repro- 
duces faithfully  the  sounds  before  uttered  into  the  receiving  mouthpiece. 
Although  the  instrument  is  greatly  improved,  still,  some  even  scientific 
papers  have,  we  think,  been  too  extravagant  in  their  praise.  It  is  cer- 
tain that  no  one  would  take  the  same  pleasure  in  a  piece  of  music  re- 
peated by  the  phonograph  that  he  would  in  listening  to  the  original. 
Still,  some  have  indulged  such  fancies.  The  reproduced  sound,  more- 
over, is  so  faint  that  in  order  to  hear  it  it  is  ordinarily  necessary  to  make 
use  of  a  tube  leading  from  the  mouthpiece  to  the  ear. 

Mr.  Berliner  has  departed  somewhat  more  widely  Trom  the  type  of 
Edison's  first  phonograph.  He  goes  back  to  Leon  Scott's  phonauto- 
graph,  the  prototype  of  all  instruments  for  recording  sound  vibrations. 
His  stylus  is  a  lever,  pivoted  at  right  angles  to  the  diaphragm,  and  mag- 
nifying its  vibrations  in  the  record.  In  order  to  secure  a  really  imper- 
ishable record,  from  which  the  sound  may  be  repeated  as  often  as  desired, 
without  impairing  its  perfection,  Mr.  Berliner  substitutes  for  the  receiv- 
ing cylinder  a  zinc  plate  coated  with  soft  wax.  After  the  indentations 
corresponding  to  the  sound  vibrations  have  been  impressed  upon  the 
wax  coating  by  the  stylus,  the  plate  is  immersed  in  a  bath  of  chromic 
acid,  which  quickly  etches  the  indentations  into  the  zinc  itself.  There 
seems  to  be  no  reason  why  this  method  could  not  be  applied  equally 
well  to  the  apparatus  of  Edison  and  Tainter.  A  cylinder  of  zinc,  with 
the  indentations  etched  upon  its  surface,  would  evidently  form  a  much 
more  durable  record,  and  one  much  less  liable  to  injury  in  the  reproduc- 
ing process  than  a  cylinder  merely  coated  with  wax.  Indeed,  although 
Mr.  Edison  claims  that  '*  one  of  these  wax  blanks  will  repeat  its  contents 
thousands  of  times  with  undiminished  clearness,"  we  must  be  excused 
if  we  are  somewhat  incredulous.  It  is  difficult  to  see  how  a  surface  that 
is  so  easily  cut  into  by  the  blade  of  the  receiving  diaphragm  should  suc- 
cessfully resist  even  the  slightest  abrasion  from  the  needle  of  the  repro- 
ducing diaphragm,  however  light  and  delicately  adjusted  the  latter  may 
be.  If,  however,  the  zinc  cylinder  be  objected  to,  or  be  found  unlaw- 
ful in  consequence  of  the  Berliner  patents,  would  it  not  perhaps  be 
possible  to  substitute  for  the  wax  some  substance  which,  while  receiving 
the  indentations  with  equal  facility,  could  afterwards,  by  immersion  in 
some  suitable  reagent,  be  made  to  assume  a  strong  or  almost  metallic 
consistency?  Gelatine  is  an  instance  of  a  substance  that  hardens  on 
immersion  in  a  solution  of  alum.  Of  course  it  would  not  receive  the 
indentations  as  well  as  the  wax,  but  it  suggests  the  possibility  of  an  im- 
provement in  this  direction.  An  electrotype  can  reproduce  very  fine 
lines — why  not  the  minute  marks  on  the  wax  cylinder?  There  are,  it  is 
true,  many  difficulties  to  be  overcome  in  endeavors  to  improve  the  ma- 

174  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

chine  in  this  direction,  but  the  vaUie  of  the  instrument  would  be  so 
much  enhanced  that  all  the  labor  would  be  well  repaid.  Innumerable 
practical  uses  for  the  improved  phonographs  have  been  suggested  and 
prophesied  by  the  enthusiastic  inventors.  Most  of  these  are  probably 
more  fanciful  than  practical.  One,  however,  will  undoubtedly  prove  of 
great  importance,  and  will  assure  the  instrument  a  fair  sale  from  the  very 
start.  This  is,  to  replace  the  stenographer  in  receiving  all  kinds  of  dic- 
tation, which  may  then  be  written  out  at  leisure  by  the  copyist,  or  with 
the  aid  of  the  type-writer.  In  this  respect,  the  instrument  will  certainly 
prove  itself  far  cheaper  and  at  the  same  time  more  accurate  and  con- 
venient than  its  human  rival.  In  conclusion,  we  venture  to  assert  that 
the  "perfected"  phonograph  has  not  yet  received  all  the  perfection  of 
which  it  is  capable,  and  that,  if  a  commercial  future  is  once  assured  to 
it,  hosts  of  inventors  will  invade  the  field  offered  by  it  for  investigation 
and  improvement. 


So  much  has  been  said  of  late  in  regard  to  the  phenomena  observed 
on  Mars,  that  perhaps  a  brief  review  of  the  facts  and  theories  may  be 
of  interest.  The  analogy  between  Mars  and  the  Earth  lends  peculiar 
charm  to  all  the  inquiries  into  the  physical  condition  of  our  planetary 

Mars  is  the  next  planet  beyond  the  Earth  in  order  of  distance  from 
the  Sun,  and  at  its  most  favorable  oppositions  is  about  35,000,000  miles 
from  us.  In  this  position,  however,  very  good  views  of  the  planet  can 
be  had,  and,  as  far  back  as  1636,  dark  stains  were  observed  on  the  ruddy 
disk  of  Mars.  In  1666  they  were  seen  with  sufficient  distinctness  to 
serve  as  indices  of  the  planet's  rotation  on  its  axis,  which  rotation 
Cassini  determined  as  taking  place  in  24  h.  and  40  m.  But  this  time  of 
rotation  has  since  been  corrected  to  24  h.  37  m.  22.7  sec,  while  the 
dusky  spots  and  streaks  have  been  classified  as  oceans  and  straits,  and 
the  bright  portions  as  land.  That  the  surface  of  Mars  is  diversified  by 
land  and  water  we  are  reasonably  certain.  Moreover,  two  bright  patches 
near  the  poles  are  supposed  to  be  regions  of  snow.  This  conjecture  is 
strengthened  by  the  fact  that  they  wax  and  wane  with  variations  in  the 
Martian  seasons,  as  do  the  regions  of  snow  on  the  Earth  with  variations 
in  our  seasons.  Therefore,  Mars  must  have  an  atmosphere  containing 
clouds.  The  presence  of  aqueous  vapor  on  Mars  was,  in  fact,  proved  by 
Huggins  in  1867,  who  found,  while  analyzing  the  light  of  the  planet, 
the  characteristic  dark  rays  due  to  the  absorptive  action  of  water-vapor. 
Clouds,  too,  have  been  observed  floating  in  the  atmosphere  of  Mars,  and 
at  times  these  mists  so  blur  the  disk  that  the  observer  must  daily,  nay 
hourly,  especially  when  the  local  winter  prevails,  trace  the  details  of  the 
surface  through  transits  of  clouds.  The  atmosphere  in  which  these  clouds 
are  suspended  is  much  thinner  than  ours,  for,  since  the  planet  is  smaller, 
gravity  is  less  there  than  at  the  surface  of  the  Earth.     A  man  weighing 

Scientific  Chronicle.  I  ye 

one  hundred  and  fifty  pounds  here  would  weigh  but  sixty  pounds  there. 
The  atmospheric  covering,  then,  on  Mars  is  much  sparser,  and  its  pres- 
sure about  two  and  a  quarter  terrestrial  pounds  instead  of  fifteen.     In 
1877  Schiaparelli,  director  of  the  Milan  Observatory,  found  that  what 
were  taken  as  large  continents  were,  in  many  cases,  groups  of  islands, 
separated  from  each  other  by  a  network  of  canals.     In  1882  this  same 
observer  saw  these  same  canals,  but  with  this  peculiarity,  that  many  of 
them  were  seen  in  duplicate,  that  is,  a  twin  canal  ran  parallel  to  the 
original  one.     These  double  canals  have  been  seen  by  but  one  other 
observer,  Mr.  Perrotin,  director  of  the  Nice  Observatory.    He  has  traced 
three  of  them  from  the  southern  seas  to  the  north  polar  regions,  across 
land  and  sea.    No  one  else  has  ever  traced  them  so  far  through  land  and 
water,  so  that,  if  these  observations  are  correct,  many  of  the  theories 
advanced  to  explain  them  must  be  abandoned.     Mr.  Fizeau  refers  these 
stripes  to  glacial  action,  and  suggests  that  the  stripes  are  cracks  in  huge 
masses  of  ice,  seeing  an  analogy  between  them  and  th*e  rifts  in  terrestrial 
glaciers.     As  the  planet  has  a  peculiar  red  color,  there  would  certainly 
be  some  difficulty  in  accounting  for  the  red  color  of  these  fields  of  ice. 
The  temperature  of  the  planet,  too,  is  such,  judging  from  the  variations 
in  the  extent  of  the  polar  snows  and  ice,  that  these  glaciers  should  melt. 
Why,  then,  do  they  remain?     It  is  equally  difficult  to  admit  that  they 
are  water-ways  or  rivers,  for,  according  to  Perrotin,  they  flow  on  through 
the  ocean  as  well  as  through  the  land.     This  same  difficulty  prevents  the 
acceptance  of  Mr.  Procter's  explanation  that  these  twin  canals  are  dif- 
fraction-images of  rivers,  produced  by  the  mist  which  hangs  over  the 
river-beds.     But,  before  any  of  these  theories  are  rejected,  more  exten- 
sive observations  must  be  made.     The  difficulty  of  the  work  may  be 
gathered  from  the  fact  that  maps  constructed  on  the  observations  of  re- 
liable astronomers  agree  in  but  a  very  few  special  features.     We  looked, 
naturally,  to  our  great   Lick   telescope  to  settle  some  of  these  points. 
Owing,  however,  to  necessary  delays  in  completing  the  observatory,  no 
observations  could  be  made  until  the  middle  of  July.     By  this  time  the 
best  season  for  watching  the  planet,  namely,  April  and  May,  had  passed  ; 
but,  from  the  middle  of  July  to  the  end  of  August  Mars  was  carefully 
lollowed  ;  the  canals  were  seen,  but  there  was  no  evidence  of  their  being 
double.     The  story  told  by  the  Lick  telescope  is  no  doubt  reliable,  for 
it  has  shown  its  great  power  of  penetrating  the  secrets  of  the  heavens 
by  following  the  details  on  Mars  two  months  later  than  other  instru- 
ments.    Another  startling  disclosure  made  by  Mr.  Perrotin  with  regard 
to  Mars  was  the  submergence  of  the  continent  Libya.     Later,  however, 
he  stated  that  the  sea  had  receded,  leaving  the  continent  only  partially 
submerged.     Professor  Holden,  with  his  great  telescope,  found  the  con- 
tinent as  he  had  observed  it  all  along  since  1877.     So  that  if  any  change 
had  taken  place,  which  seems  doubtful,  it  certainly  left  Libya  Unaltered. 
That  there  are  peculiar  stripes  on  Mars  is  clear  from  the  observations  of 
so  many  astronomers,  and  that  these  stripes  vary,  appear  and  disappear, 
is  also  evident  from  the  variations  in  the  observations.     How,  then,  ac- 
count for  these  changes?     The  theory  that  presents  the  least  difficulty 

176  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

is,  that  they  are  due  to  differences  in  vegetation.  The  stripes  may  rep- 
resent patches  of  vegetation  which  vary  in  size,  or  disappear  with  changes 
in  the  seasons.  From  ascertained  facts,  the  surface  of  Mars  is  composed 
of  land  and  water;  the  planet  has  snow,  clouds,  rain,  an  atmosphere, 
and  a  temperature  not  much  less  than  ours.  All  these  conditions  are 
favorable  to  the  growth  of  organic  life ;  moreover,  the  spectroscope 
teaches  us  that  the  elements  in  Mars  are  the  same  as  our  own.  Hence 
it  is  highly  probable  that  there  is  a  rich  vegetation  on  Mars.  Now,  if 
the  changes  in  the  stripes  are  due  to  variations  in  the  vegetation,  they 
should  follow  some  rule,  they  should  be  guided  by  the  seasons  and  be 
somewhat  progressive  from  the  equator  towards  the  poles.  Such  a  change 
has  been  observed  in  the  patch  known  as  Hades.  The  stripe  is  in 
north  latitude,  and  runs  almost  north  and  south.  As  Mr.  Pickering,  of 
the  Harvard  Observatory,  has  pointed  out,  the  southern  portion  of 
Hades,  which  had  been  a  well-defined  stripe,  entirely  disappeared  in 
the  latter  part  of  the  Martian  summer.  We  look  forward,  however,  to 
other  observations  to  settle  these  interesting  questions,  and  expect  the 
large  telescope  on  Mount  Hamilton  to  bring  to  light  many  details  during 
the  opposition  of  1890,  and  the  more  favorable  one  of  1892. 


The  ''Chronicle"  for  April,  1888,  gives  a  short  description  of  the 
principles  of  spectrum  analysis,  and  points  out  the  wide  field  open  to 
the  spectroscopist  who  wishes  to  investigate  the  simple  character  of  our 
chemical  elements.  Professor  Griinwald,  of  Prague,  whose  work  has 
been  in  this  direction,  has  established  a  law  which,  by  its  simplicity  and 
the  number  of  coincidences,  cannot  fail  to  attract  attention,  and  may 
become  the  basis  of  a  future  mathematico-chemical  analysis.  He  has 
not  only  determined  a  relation  between  the  spectra  of  hydrogen  and 
oxygen,  and  their  compound  water,  but  has  brought  out  what  appears 
to  be  the  fact  of  the  chemical  composition  of  hydrogen  and  oxygen, 
and  the  separate  existence  of  the  elements  of  hydrogen  in  the  atmosphere 
of  the  sun.  To  understand  the  theory,  let  us  suppose  two  elements,  A 
and  B,  capable  of  forming  a  gas  C.  When  the  gas  C  is  examined  by 
the  spectroscope,  there  will  be  certain  wave-lengths  of  light,  due  to  the 
element  A.  If,  however,  the  compound  gas  C  be  united  chemically  with 
some  other  substance,  so  as  to  form  a  second  compound,  D,  which  will 
contain  A,  but  in  a  way  different  from  that  in  which  C  contained  it,  the 
spectrum  of  D  will  also  have  wave-lengths  of  light  due  to  A.  The 
wave-lengths  of  light  due  to  A,  in  both  these  cases,  are  not  the  same, 
but  bear  to  each  other  the  same  ratio  as  the  atomic  volume  of  ^  in  C 
bears  to  the  atomic  volume  of  ^  in  D.  Professor  Grunwald  detects  in 
the  spectrum  of  hydrogen  two  groups  of  lines  so  arranged  that  the 
wave-lengths  of  one  group  multiplied  by  i|-,  and  those  of  the  other  by 
I",  give  the  wave-lengths  of  the  corresponding  lines  in  the  water-vapor 

Scientific  Chronicle.  1 77 

spectrum.  Hence,  he  concludes  that  hydrogen  is  composed  of  two 
elements.  If,  then,  a  and  b  represent  the  volumes  of  these  two  elements, 
a  -\-  b=^\,  the  unit  volume  of  hydrogen ;  and  since  hydrogen  is  J  of  the 
atomic  volume  of  water-vapor,  we  liave,  according  to  the  theory,  Vka-\- 
tb  =  ^.  From  these  two  equations,  a  =  ^,  and  b  =  \;  therefore,  hy- 
drogen is  a  compound  of  ba,  which,  on  separation,  will  expand  in  the 
ratio  of  3  to  2.  The  spectrum  of  these  two  elements  can  be  obtained 
from  the  spectra  of  hydrogen.  Multiplying  the  wave-lengths  in  group 
^  by  f  we  obtain  the  line  for  a^  and  in  a  smilar  way  we  find  the  line  for 
b.  Professor  Griinwald  has  identified  the  line  for  b  with  the  Helium 
line  of  Angstrom's  scale,  and  the  line  for  a  with  the  corona  line  of 
Kirchoff's  map.  Hence,  he  suggests  that  these  two  constituent  ele- 
ments of  hydrogen  be  called  "Coronium"  and  "Helium."  The  pri- 
mary element,  *' Coronium,"  must  be  a  gas  several  times  lighter  than 
hydrogen.  It  is  a  strange  coincidence  that  just  as  Professor  Griinwald's 
theory  was  proposed,  another  law  should  be  deduced  from  a  different 
source,  demanding  the  existence  of  elements  such  as  the  new  theory  of 
spectrum  analysis  points  out.  This  new  law  is  the  logarithmic  law  of 
the  atomic  weights.  It  was  explained  by  Dr.  Johnstone  Stoney  to  the 
members  of  the  chemical  section  at  the  late  meeting  of  the  British  As- 
sociation. If,  as  seems  likely,  this  is  a  law  of  nature,  there  must  be  three 
elements  lighter  than  hydrogen.  By  like  considerations  to  those  given 
above.  Professor  Griiriwald  found  that  oxygen  was  made  up  of  the  hy- 
drogen that  gives  the  second  spectrum,  already  mentioned,  and  another 
substance  which  he  resolves  into  four  parts,  by  volume,  of  b,  and  five 
parts  of  another  substance  which  is  again  resolved  into  four  parts  of  b, 
and  an  unknown  primary  substance,  c.  He  has  also  resolved  magnesium 
and  carbon  into  b  and  c.  This  theory  is  startling,  and  although  not  yet 
fully  investigated,  still  throws  some  suspicion  on  the  simple  character  of 
hydrogen  and  our  other  elementary  substances. 


To  explain  the  action  of  two  electrified  bodies  upon  each  other  physi- 
cists have,  for  a  long  time,  been  divided  into  two  camps;  the  one,  seeing 
in  electrical  attraction  and  repulsion  a  confirmation  of  the  doctrine  of 
action  at  a  distance,  the  other  as  strenuously  advocating  the  necessity 
and  therefore  the  existence  of  a  medium.  There  was  no  empirical  proof 
of  the  existence  of  such  a  medium  for  electricity.  Since  light  takes 
eight  minutes  to  come  from  the  sun  to  the  earth,  a  medium  must  be  ad- 
mitted to  explain  what  becomes  of  the  light  after  leaving  the  sun  and 
before  reaching  the  earth.  But  electro-magnetic  induction  was,  'as  far  as 
we  could  see,  instantaneous,  and  even  where  there  was  delay,  as  in  tele- 
graphing and  in  magneto-electric  transmission  by  means  of  conductors, 
the  supporters  of  action  at  a  distance  gave  an  explanation.  Somethmg 
further,  then,  was  required  to  settle  the  question.  As  all  doubt  about 
VOL.  XIV. — 12 

iy8  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

a.  medium  for  light  was  banished  by  the  experiments  of  Young  and 
Fresnel,  so,  too,  the  experiments  lately  made  by  Hertz,  in  Germany, 
settle  the  question  for  electro-magnetic  action  ;  for,  if  the  phenomena 
of  the  interference  of  light  demand  a  medium,  assuredly  the  interference 
of  electro-magnetic  waves,  as  observed  by  Hertz,  postulates  a  medium 
in  which  these  waves  exist.  The  German  physicist  produced  rapidly 
alternating  currents,  having  a  wave  length  of  about  two  metres.  These 
he  detected  by  the  principle  of  resonance,  a  principle  illustrated  by  the 
fact  that  regular  well-timed  pushes  with  the  finger  against  a  heavy  bell 
will,  after  a  short  time,  cause  it  to  swing  through  a  large  arc.  Hertz 
then  made  a  circuit  whose  rate  of  vibration  for  electric  currents  was  the 
same  as  that  of  his  generator.  His  generator  induced  currents  in  this 
resonant  circuit,  and  he  was  able  to  see  the  sparks  due  to  the  induced 
vibrations  leaping  across  an  air-space  in  the  resonant  circuit.  The 
regular  electrical  impulses  broke  down  the  resistance  of  the  air,  as  the 
regular  pushes  on  the  bell  overcame  its  inertia.  He  placed  his  gene- 
rator several  wave-lengths  from  a  wall,  and  placed  the  receiving  reso- 
nant circuit  between  the  generator  and  the  wall,  and  in  this  air-space 
observed  that  sparks  appeared  and  disappeared  at  regular  intervals,  due 
to  the  interference  of  the  incident  electric  waves,  and  those  reflected 
from  the  wall.  We  have  a  similar  phenomenon  in  light,  known  as 
Lloyd's  bands,  due  to  the  interference  of  direct  and  reflected  waves  of 
light.  By  this  experiment  the  ethereal  theory  of  electro-magnetism  is 
established,  and  it  becomes  clear  that  electro-magnetic  actions  are  due 
to  a  medium  pervading  all  space,  the  same  medium,  in  fact,  by  which 
light-waves  are  propagated.  This  is  likely  but  the  first  step  in  a  series 
of  investigations  that  may  throw  light  on  the  constitution  of  the  ether. 
To  it  we  may  have  to  look  for  an  explanation  of  chemical  action,  and, 
possibly,  of  gravitation.  This  discovery  will,  undoubtedly,  have  a  prac- 
tical bearing.  In  all  known  illuminating  processes,  there  is  with  the 
generation  of  light  a  simultaneous  generation  of  a  great  amount  of  heat, 
which,  as  far  as  illuminating  purposes  are  concerned,  is  lost.  We  look 
forward,  then,  to  the  experiments  of  the  many  scientists  who  have  taken 
up  this  line  of  investigation  for  a  practical  method  of  generating  light 
without  the  simultaneous  production  of  a  large  amount  of  useless  heat. 

Book  Notices,  lyg 

13oofe  iBtoticrg, 

Narrative  and  Critical  History  of  America.  With  Bibliographical  and 
Descriptive  Essays  on  its  Historical  Sources  and  Authorities.  Illustrated. 
Vols,  n.,  HI.  and  IV.  Edited  by  Justin  Winsor,  Librarian  of  Harvard  Uni- 
versity, Corresponding  Secretary  of  Massachusetts  Historical  Society.  Boston 
and  New^  York :  Houghton,  Mifflin  &  Company.  The  Riverside  Press,  Cam- 

Under  this  title  Messrs,  Houghton,  Mifflin  &  Co.  have  commenced 
the  publication  of  what  they  propose  shall  be  '*  a  complete  and  exhaustive 
history  of  the  American  Continent,"  from  prehistoric  times  to  the 
middle  of  the  present  century.  The  work  is  to  be  comprised  in  eight 
royal  octavo  volumes  of  about  six  hundred  pages  each,  and  is  profusely 
illustrated  with  maps,  views,  portraits  and  fac-simile  reproductions  of 
historical  documents. 

In  addition  to  the  claims  which  the  magnitude  of  the  undertaking 
and  the  importance  of  the  subject  and  the  ability  of  the  writers  employed 
have  upon  public  attention,  it  is  believed  by  the  projectors  of  the  work 
that  these  claims,  strong  though  they  be,  are  overshadowed  by  the  sur- 
passing excellence  of  the  method  that  has  been  adopted. 

The  method  referred  to  bears  the  same  relation  to  history  which 
'*the  inductive  method  of  Bacon  and  the  comparative  method  in  the 
applied  sciences  do  to  present  scientific  and  philosophic  progress," 
and  which  the  projectors  of  the  work  before  us  think  ''have  revolution- 
ized civilization."  They  claim  for  their  work  that  it  ''embodies  a  true 
method  of  historical  investigation."  Inasmuch,  too,  as  the  "labor  of 
research  in  covering  even  a  very  limited  period  of  history,  precludes  the 
possibility  of  doing  full  justice  "  to  it  by  any  one  individual,  they  have 
adopted  the  ^'■co-operative^'  plan. 

In  carrying  this  idea  into  practical  effect  the  work  has  been  placed 
under  the  editorial  supervision  of  Mr.  Justin  Winsor,  Librarian  of 
Harvard  University,  etc.,  assisted  by  a  committee  of  five  distinguished 
members  of  the  Massachusetts  Historical  Society,  who  have  consented  to 
advise  with  the  editor  during  the  progress  of  the  work.  Each  special 
subject  is  assigned  by  the  editor  to  a  historical  writer  who,  it  is  believed 
by  him,  is  eminently  qualified  to  treat  it.  The  different  chapters,  as 
a  rule,  consist  of  two  parts :  First,  a  Historical  Narrative  sufficiently 
full  for  ordinary  use,  and  which  groups  the  salient  points  of  the  story, 
and  serves  as  a  text  or  essay  which  follows  it.  Second,  a  Critical  Ess  ay  ^ 
which  is  intended  to  describe  "  the  original  sources  of  the  preceding 
narrative — manuscripts,  monuments,  archaeological  remains,  with  ac- 
counts of  their  discovery,  their  transmission  to  later  times,  their  vicissi- 
tudes, as  well  as  the  places,  libraries,  museums,  etc.,  where  they  are  to 
be  found;  the  writers,  contemporary,  early,  or  late,  who  have  become 
authorities  on  the  several  subjects ;  and  a  critical  statement  of  existing 
knowledge  "  on  these  subjects,  etc. 

It  is  thought  that  the  bias  of  each  narrator  will  be  corrected  by  the 
critical  anatysis  of  the  essay.  Each  statement,  too,  of  fact  or  opinion, 
must  pass  under  the  scrutiny  of  the  Editor,  who  submits  debateable 
questions  to  an  advisory  committee.     In  this  way,  it  is  believed,  error 

i8o  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

will  be  reduced  to  a  minimum  and  truth  will  be  approached  as  closely 
as  possible. 

We  have  described  the  plan  adopted  and  the  expectations  and  claims 
which  the  projectors  of  the  work  have  based  upon  it  at  such  length,  be- 
cause of  the  extent  and  importance  pf  the  field  of  knowledge  which  it  is 
proposed  the  work  shall  include,  and  also  because  it  is  the  first  attempt, 
we  believe,  by  means  of  the  proposed  method  to  get  up  a  comprehen- 
sive, complete,  and  reliable  history  of  the  American  Continent.  The 
method  is  claimed  to  be  entirely  new.  We  are  not  prepared  to  concede 
this,  without  qualification.  It  may  be  new  as  regards  the  extent  and 
comprehensiveness  of  the  conception,  but  it  is  not  new  with  respect  to 
the  idea  of  compiling  history  by  the  combined  labors  of  historical 
writers,  each  working  upon  a  special  subject.  But  this,  after  all,  is  of 
small  importance  compared  with  the  success  itself  of  the  plan. 

With  regard  to  this  we  would  be  more  than  doubtful  from  a  consid- 
eration of  the  plan  itself.  Mere  induction,  even  in  the  physical  sciences, 
is  incomplete  and  leads  to  no  real  conclusions  unless  it  is  joined  with 
and  supplemented  by  deduction.  So,  too,  it  is,  and  in  a  higher  degree, 
in  the  domain  of  history.  Synthesis  must  necessarily  supplement  ana- 
lysis, in  every  true  rational  process.  The  inductive  or  analytic  method 
rigidly  adhered  to  in  historical  investigations  will  give  us  facts,  but  not 
their  true  relation  or  moral  significance.  It  will  enable  the  investigator 
to  compile  a  chronicle  but  not  a  history. 

There  is  a  serious  danger,  too,  that  the  person  who  undertakes  to 
rigidly  adhere  to  the  inductive  method  alone — contemning  and  abne- 
gating that  of  deduction — will  unconsciously  and  without  proper  care  as 
to  his  logical  processes  employ  that  of  deduction,  and  substitute  unproved 
hypotheses  for  true  conclusions.  To  this  danger  persons  who  essay  this 
one-sided  method  of  ratiocination  almost  invariably  succumb,  without 
themselves  being  aware  of  it.  For  the  man  who  imagines  that  he  can 
employ  solely  the  inductive  method  in  his  investigations  of  any  subject, 
is  most  liable  to  be  influenced  by  preconceived  notions.  This  is  the 
proton  pseudos,  the  primary,  fundamental  fallacy  of  many  of  the  so-called 
scientists  of  our  day.  The  reason  of  it  is  plain.  No  one  can  think 
correctly  or  reach  true  conclusions  who  does  not  observe  and  follow  out 
the  law  of  all  right-thinking.  And  to  think  rightly  and  truly  requires 
not  only  analysis  but  synthesis,  not  only  induction  but  also  deduction. 

These  conclusions  are  verified  in  volumes  II.,  III.  and  IV.  of  the  work 
before  us,  the  only  volumes  that  have  yet  been  published.  The  writers 
on  the  special  subjects  which  each  one  has  treated,  and  ably  treated, 
give  in  most  instances  brief  chronicles,  and  in  other,  but  fewer,  instances, 
essays,  rather  than  histories.  Giving  them,  too,  as  we  do,  full  credit  for 
honesty  of  intention  and  a  resolute  purpose  to  be  impartial,  we  can  yet 
plainly  perceive  in  their  manner  of  treating  their  special  subjects,  marks 
of  personal  bias,  growing  out  of  preconceived  opinions,  or  prejudices 
resulting  from  the  schools  of  thought  of  which  they  are  respectively 

We  make  these  remarks  not  at  all  for  the  purpose  of  detracting  from 
the  actual  and  great  value  of  the  work — for  to  historical  students  it  is 
of  very  great  value — but  in  order  to  guard  our  readers  from  disappoint- 
ment through  their  indulging  in  expectations  which  are  based  upon  erro- 
neous conceptions;  and  also  in  order  to  point  out  in  what  the  true  and 
really  great  value  of  the  work  consists. 

That  value,  in  our  judgment,  is  not  so  much  in  the  narrative  part  of 
the  different  chapters— for  in  that  part  of  very  many  of  them  we  frankly 
confess  we  have  been  disappointed — but  in  the  ''critical''  part  of  each 

Book  Notices,  i3j 

chapter  and  its  accompanying  notes,  etc. ,  giving  the  sources  of  informa- 
tion, and  historical  authorities;  illustrated  as  they  are  profusely,  with  cuts 
and  fac-similes  of  ancient  monuments,  documents,  archaeological  remains, 
etc.,  etc.  For  this  reason  the  work  is  of  exceeding  value  to  searchers 
into  the  original  sources  of  American  history.  To  these  it  will  be  an 
almost  indispensable  aid. 

That  our  readers  may  be  acquainted  with  the  fulness  and  compehen- 
siveness  of  the  intended  scope  of  the  work,  we  give,  as  fully  as  the  limits 
of  our  space  will  permit,  its  plan  in  detail.  The  first  volume  will  con- 
tain papers  on  ''America  before  Columbus,"  with  bibliographical  and 
descriptive  essays  on  historical  sources  and  authorities.  The  publica- 
tion of  this  volume,  very  prudently  and  properly,  is  postponed  until  all 
the  other  volumes  shall  have  been  published  in  order  that  full  advantage 
may  be  taken  of  investigations  now  progressing  in  the  field  of  American 

Volumes  II.,  III.  and  IV.,  which  have  been  published  and  are  now 
before  us,  treat  respectively  of  "  Spanish  Discoveries  and  Conquests  in 
America,"  with  '*  Bibliographical  and  Descriptive  Essays  on  Historical 
Sources  and  Authorities ;  on  English  Discoveries  and  Settlements  in 
America,"  with  like  "  Bibliographical  and  Descriptive  Essays;"  and  on 
"The  French  Discoveries  and  Settlements  in  America,"  and  those  also 
of  the  Dutch  and  the  Swedes,,  and  with  like  "Bibliographical  and 
Descriptive  Essays." 

Volumes  VI.,  VII.  and  VIII.  are  yet  to  be  published,  at  intervals  of 
six  months.  Their  respective  subjects  will  be  :  "  The  French  and  English 
in  North  America,  from  the  English  Revolution  to  the  Peace  of  Paris, 
1689-1763.  "The  American  Revolution,  1 763-1 783."  "  The  United 
States,  1 783-1850,"  **  Canada,  and  the  American  Outgrowths  of  Con- 
tinental Europe,  Dependent  and  Independent,  in  the  Eighteenth  and 
Nineteenth  Centuries." 

Each  chapter  in  each  of  these  volumes  will  have,  in  addition  to  its 
narrative  part,  "Bibliographical,  Descriptive,  and  Critical  Essays  on  the 
Historical  Sources  and  Authorities." 

It  is  probably  too  late  to  change  the  scope  and  plan  of  these  latter 
four  volumes.  But  if  not,  we  would  suggest  that  the  work  close  for  the 
present  with  the  end  of  the  eighteenth  century,  instead  of  continuing 
down  to  1850.  This  latter  date  is  too  near  our  own  day,  and  too  closely 
connected  with  it,  to  permit  of  a  comprehensive  and  impartial  survey 
and  exhibition  of  the  subject.  However,  even  though  the  narrative  of 
this  period  should  be  unduly  tinged  with  the  coloring  of  our  own  times, 
the  collection  and  arrangement  of  historical  sources  and  authorities 
which  the  volumes  dealing  with  the  first  part  of  this  century  will  contain, 
will  make  them  valuable  to  students  of  history. 

To  return  to  the  volumes  before  us  :  The  seventh  chapter  in  volume 
III.  seems  to  us  entirely  out  of  place  in  a  work  of  this  kind.  It  is  not 
historical,  except  in  a  most  distant  and  remote  way.  Under  the  form  of 
a  disquisition  on  "The  Religious  Element  in  the  Settlement  of  New 
England,"  and  "  The  Puritans  and  Separatists  in  New  England,"  it  is 
an  elaborate  sectarian  apology  for  them.  On  the  same  grounds  on  which 
this  paper  has  been  introduced  into  the  work,  we  might  reasonably  ex- 
pect to  find,  but  do  not  find,  separate  disquisitions  on  the  tenets  of  the 
Friends  as  a  religious  element  in  the  settlement  of  Pennsylvania,  or  the 
tenets  of  the  Baptists  as  a  religious  element  in  the  settlement  of  Rhode 
Island,  and  on  those  of  Catholics  in  the  settlement  of  Maryland. 

Still  more  incongruous  with  the  calm  judicial  spirit  which  should 
characterize  a  work  such  as  this  aims  to  be,  is  the  so-called  Historical 

1 82  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

Narrative  on  ''Las  Casas,  and  the  Relations  of  the  Spaniards  to  the 
Indians,"  by  Rev.  George  Edward  Ellis,  D.D.,  LL.D.,  President  of  the 
Massachusetts  Historical  Society,  and  one  of  the  advisory  committee  to  the 
editor.  It  is  not,  in  any  proper  sense,  either  historical  or  narrative.  It  is  a 
sensational,  highly-colored  sketch  of  the  gentleness  and  amiability  of  the 
Indians,  and  their  cruel  treatment  by  Spanish  adventurers,  contrasted 
with  the  humane  labors  of  Las  Casas.  It  is  full  of  rhetorical  exaggera- 
tions, and  of  evidences  of  the  personal  bias  and  odium  theologiciwi  of  the 
writer.  Lest  this  judgment  be  thought  too  sweeping,  we  give  a  few 
specimens  (from  many  more  that  might  be  quoted)  of  the  writer's  state- 
ments and  language.  Nor  are  they  selected  for  a  purpose,  but  taken  as 
they  meet  the  eye  in  turning  over  the  pages.  The  early  Spanish  settlers 
are  characterized — not  individually,  but  as  a  class  and  without  distinc- 
tion— as  "murderers,  rapacious,  cruel,  and  inhuman  ;"  as  having  *'  in- 
flicted upon  hundreds  of  thousands  of  the  natives  all  the  forms  and 
agonies  of  fiendish  cruelty."  This,  too,  is  explained  ''  by  referring  to 
the  training  of  the  Spanish  nature  in  inhumanity,  cruelty,  contempt  of 
human  life,  and  obduracy  of  feeling,  through  many  centuries  of  ruthless 
warfare,"  which  ''  had  made  every  Spaniard  a  fighter,  and  every  infidel 
an  enemy  exempted  from  all  tolerance  and  mercy.  Treachery,  defiance 
of  pledges  and  treaties,  had  educated  the  champions  of  the  Cross  and 
Faith  in  what  were  to  them  but  the  accomplishments  of  the  soldier  and 
the  fidelity  of  the  believer."  "  The  Holy  Office  of  the  Inquisition,  with 
all  its  cavernous  secrets  and  fiendish  processes,  dates  also  from  the  same 
period,  and  gave  its  fearful  consecration  to  all  the  most  direful  passions." 
"  With  training  in  inhumanity  and  cruelty,  the  Spanish  adventurers," 
etc.,  "thousands  of  the  natives"  were  *' crowded  together,  naked  and 
helpless,  for  slaughter,  like  sheep  in  a  park  or  meadow."  They  were 
"wasted  at  the  extremities  by  torturing  fires,  till,  after  hours  of  agony, 
they  turned  their  dying  gaze,  rather  in  amazed  dread  than  in  rage,  upon 
their  tormentors,"  etc. 

All  this,  too,  contrasts  strikingly  and  broadly  with  the  manner  in 
which,  in  other  papers,  the  needlessly  cruel  conduct  of  the  early  settlers 
of  Massachusetts  and  Connecticut,  towards  the  Indians  of  those  regions, 
is  lightly  touched  upon  or  left  unmentioned,  and  also  with  the  omission 
to  describe  the  piratical  outrages  of  English  adventurers  upon  Spanish 

There  are  other  "narratives"  in  the  volume  before  us  which  we  think 
are  open  to  like  objections  of  personal  or  sectarian  bias,  but  in  a  less 
degree  than  those  we  have  mentioned.  Nor  can  we  abstain  from  ex- 
pressing our  regret  for  the  partial  and  one-sided  view  that  is  taken  of 
the  character  and  conduct  of  Columbus  in  the  "narrative"  of  his  life 
and  discoveries.  So,  too,  we  cannot  but  think  that  the  insinuation  that 
Catholics  hold  that  "no  faith  is  to  be  kept  with  heretics;"  the  charac- 
terizing "  the  Jesuits  "  as  "  diplomatic  and  insidious  ;"  the  styling  of 
the  Catholic  religion  "  popery,"  and  other  like  expressions,  are  entirely 
out  of  place  in  a  work  of  such  high  pretensions.  They  naturally  create 
a  strong  presumption  against  the  impartiality  and  reliability  of  the 
writers  who  employ  them.  They  certainly  are  grave  defects,  and  seri- 
ously detract  from  the  value  of  many  of  the  narratives.  It  is  to  be  hoped 
that  they  will  be  carefully  guarded  against  in  the  volumes  that  are  still 
to  be  published. 

Yet,  notwithstanding  these  defects,  and  referring  more  particularly  to 
the  bibliographical  and  critical  papers,  with  their  copious  notes  and 
illustrations  (which  we  think  are  by  far  the  most  important),  we  regard 
the  work,  taking  it  as  a  whole,  as  the  most  systematic  and  painstaking  at- 

Book  Notices,  jg- 

tempt  that  has  yet  been  made  to  compile  and  publish  a  comprehensive 
history  of  the  Western  Continent.  The  bibliographical  and  critical  es- 
says, and  their  numerous  references  to  historical  authorities  and  docu- 
ments, and  other  original  sources  of  information,  will  furnish  invaluable 
assistance  to  those  who  wish  to  thoroughly  study  American  history. 

The  American  Commonwealth.      By  Javies  Bryce.     2  volumes      London  and 
New  York :  McMillan  &  Co.     1888. 

''  The  longer  any  one  studies  a  vast  subject,  the  more  cautious  in  in- 
ference does  he  become."  This  sentence,  taken  from  the  midst  of  the 
introductory  chapter  of  the  work  before  us,  is  the  terse  expression  of  a 
principle  which  it  would  be  well  for  all  writers  to  bear  in  mind  and  to 
adopt  for  their  own  guidance ;  then  the  reading  world  might  be  sup- 
plied with  fewer  ready-made  judgments  that  are,  for  the  most  part, 
erroneous.  Our  author  professes  to  have  followed  it  in  writing  his 
latest  work.  "  I  have  striven,"  he  says,  "to  avoid  the  temptations  of 
the  deductive  method,  and  to  present  simply  the  facts  of  the  case,  ar- 
ranging and  connecting  them  as  best  I  can,  but  letting  them  speak  for 
themselves  rather  than  pressing  upon  the  reader  my  own  conclusions." 
And  because  Americans,  writing  of  the  history  and  institutions  of  the 
United  States,  have  almost .  invariably  ignored  this  principle,  the  best 
works  on  our  country,  its  political,  industrial  and  social  institutions, 
have  been  written  by  foreigners.  Even  Bancroft  impairs  the  usefulness 
of  his  great  work  by  his  evident  purpose,  implied  on  almost  every  page, 
of  stating  facts  only  for  the  sake  of  making  them  support  the  false  theory 
that  liberty  is  an  essential  outgrowth  of  Protestantism.  No  doubt,  the 
vast  majority  of  books  about  us,  written  by  Europeans,  especially  the 
French  and  English,  are  worthless,  worse  than  useless  ;  but  yet  De 
Tocqueville  wrote  the  first  really  valuable  appreciation  of  us,  and  his 
Democracy  in  America  still  remains  a  standard  work,  though  composed 
according  to  a  preconceived  notion  of  what,  in  the  writer's  judgment, 
we  ought  to  be,  rather  than  of  what  our  ancestors  actually  were  in  his 
day.  At  least  two  other  European  writers  have  judged  us  according  to 
justice,  Herr  von  Hoist  in  Germany,  and  M.  Claudio  Jannet  in  France, 
the  latter  being  one  of  the  glories  of  Catholic  literature,  who  is  far  from 
being  as  well  known  in  this  country  as  he  ought  to  be. 

If  for  no  other  reason  than  that  implied  in  the  two  sentences  we  have 
quoted,  Mr.  Bryce's  book  is  superior  to  De  Tocqueville's,  though  it  is, 
by  no  means,  free  from  errors  of  statement,  enough  of  which  to  fill  a 
page  or  two  we  could  cull  after  but  a  cursory  examination.  In  treating, 
for  instance,  of  our  Presidential  election,  he  says  that,  on  account  of  the 
obscurity  of  the  candidates  for  electors,  the  name  of  a  party's  candidate 
for  the  Presidency  is  printed  at  the  head  of  the  ballots,  while  the  fact  is 
that  such  intimation  to  voters  is  really  an  exception  to  the  rule.  But, 
far  more  serious,  in  our  view,  are  his  references  to  Catholics  and  to 
religious  liberty  in  the  colonies  and  the  States.  At  the  time  of  the  Revo- 
lution, he  says  (vol.  i.  p.  21),  all  the  inhabitants  of  the  revolted  colo- 
nies or  new  States,  "■  except  some  Roman  Catholics  in  Maryland,  pro- 
fessed the  Protestant  religion."  What,  then,  of  the  thousands  of  Catho- 
lics at  that  time  living  in  Delaware,  Pennsylvania  and  New  Jersey  ? 
And  what  warranty  has  he  for  asserting  (vol.  ii.  p.  567)  that  'the  creed 
of  Roman  Catholic  Bishops  ''justifies  the  enforcement  of  the  true  faith 
by  the  secular  arm  ?  "  This  statement  is  the  more  astonishing,  as  Mr. 
Bryce  is  usually  fair  in  his  treatment  of  Catholics,  with  whose  disabilities 
in  the  State  of  New  Hampshire,  however,  he  has  not  made  himself,  by 

1 84  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

any  means,  so  well  acquainted  as  with  most  of  the  other  subjects  of 
which  he  treats  in  these  two  volumes. 

But,  in  general,  he  carries  out  admirably  the  plan  which  he  drew  up 
for  himself,  when  undertaking  to  write  this  book,  the  presenting  of  a 
general  view  of  the  United  States,  both  as  a  government  and  as  a  nation. 
And  his  treatment  is  comprehensive,  but  not,  of  course,  exhaustive. 
The  latter  course  would  lead  the  writer  ''  to  descant  as  fully  upon  mat- 
ters he  knows  imperfectly,  as  upon  those  with  which  his  own  tastes  and 
knowledge  qualify  him  to  deal."  Accordingly,  while  passing  lightly 
over  some  things,  he  endeavors  **  to  omit  nothing  which  seems  necessary 
to  make  the  political  life  and  the  national  character  and  tendencies  of 
the  Americans  intelligible  to  Europeans  "  ;  and,  with  this  view  he  touches 
'*upon  some  topics  only  distantly  connected  with  government  or  poli- 
tics." He  spent  nearly  twenty  years  in  studying  his  subject,  and  during 
that  period  he  visited  this  country  three  times,  and  of  these  visits  he 
tells  us  himself:  '' When  I  first  visited  America  eighteen  years  ago,  I 
brought  home  a  swarm  of  bold  generalizations.  Half  of  them  were 
thrown  overboard  in  1881.  Of  the  half  that  remained,  some  were 
dropped  into  the  Atlantic  when  I  returned  across  it,  after  a  third  visit  in 
1883-84;  and,  although  the  two  later  journeys  gave  birth  to  some  new 
views,  these  views  are  fewer  and  more  discreetly  cautious  than  their  de- 
parted sisters  of  1870.  I  can  honestly  say,"  he  adds,  contrasting  his 
own  with  De  Tocqueville's  plan,  ''  that  I  shall  be  far  better  pleased,  if 
readers  of  a  philosophic  turn  find  in  the  book  matter  on  which  they  feel 
they  can  safely  build  theories  for  themselves,  than  if  they  take  from  it 
theories  ready  made." 

In  these  two  volumes,  of  nearly  seven  hundred  pages  each,  there  is 
ample  food  for  years  of  reflection.  They  are  almost  entirely  devoted 
to  a  description  of  the  facts  of  to-day.  Mr.  Bryce  takes  pains  to  tell  us 
that,  in  carrying  out  his  plan,  he  has  had  to  resist  the  temptation  of 
straying  off  into  history  ;  but  he  has  written  history  nevertheless,  for 
Freeman's  dictum  is  strictly  true,  that  politics  is  present  history,  history 
in  the  ordinary  sense  being  past  politics.  Our  author  makes  one  brief 
historical  diversion,  but  it  is  only  because  he  found  it  necessary  to  do 
so  in  order  to  clear  the  way  for  a  proper  understanding  of  our  political 
'  system,  of  which  he  has  evidently  made  a  thorough  study.  But  even 
without  history  he  naturally  found  his  subject  a  vast  and  complex  one ; 
yet  he  has  managed  to  arrange  its  component  parts  according  to  a  plan 
which  is  not  only  logical  in  its  order,  but  makes  the  reading  of  the  book 
entertaining  as  well  as  useful. 

''There  are  three  main  things,"  he  says,  '•  that  one  wishes  to  know 
about  anational  commonwealth,  namely,  its  framework  and  constitutional 
machinery,  the  methods  by  which  it  is  worked,  the  forces  which  move 
it  and  direct  its  course.  It-  is  natural  to  begin  with  the  first  of  these. 
Accordingly,  I  begin  with  the  government."  And  in  the  first  of  the 
six  parts  into  which  he  divides  his  work,  he  describes  the  national  gov- 
ernment in  all  its  branches,  executive,  legislative  and  judiciary;  in  the 
second,  the  State  governments  in  the  same  manner ;  in  the  third,  our 
system  of  political  parties,  and  in  the  fourth  the  bearing  of  public  opin- 
ion upon  the  system ;  while  in  the  fifth  part  he  gives  illustrations  and 
makes  reflections,  and  in  the  sixth  deals  with  our  social  institutions,  in- 
cluding therein  the  strength  and  influence  of  religion  in  the  United 
States.  This  we  consider  the  least  thorough  and  least  satisfactory  part 
of  the  work.  Necessarily,  some  repetition  was  involved  in  the  faithful 
carrying  out  of  this  plan  ;  but  a  little  repetition  was  better  than  the 
leaving  of  some  topics  in   comparative  obscurity.     The  evils  of  our  sys- 

Book  Notices,  jg- 

tem,  especially  in  municipal  government,  are  pointed  out  in  a  good,  not 
a  carping,  spirit,  which  should  inspire  our  legislators  with  a  keen  sense 
of  the  necessity  of  correcting  abuses  that  not  only  tend  to  the  blunting 
of  public  and  civic  virtue  at  home,  but  also  to  the  depreciating  among 
foreigners  of  our  entire  system.  Especially  are  the  corruptions  of  New 
York  and  Philadelphia  politics  dwelt  upon  for  this  purpose.  Valuable 
documents,  illustrative  of  the  more  important  chapters,  are  given  in 
copious  appendices  to  both  volumes. 

Mr.  Bryce  assures  us  that  he  has  found  it  so  easy  to  be  non-partisan 
in  his  treatment  of  our  country  that,  after  reading  his  pages,  we  find  it 
difficult  to  conceive  how  most  foreign  books  about  us  are  imbued  through- 
out with  the  spirit  of  prejudice.  He  says  that,  in  the  first  place,  he 
wrote  down  what  struck  him  as  the  dominant  facts,  and  then  tested,  by 
consulting  American  friends  and  studying  American  books,  the  view 
which  he  had  reached.  He  also  claims  to  have  discovered  the  cause 
why  such  a  book  as  his  has  not  been  written  by  an  American,  who  might 
naturally  be  supposed  to  have  great  advantages  over  a  stranger.  But, 
after  mature  reflection,  the  conclusion  is  naturally  reached  that  "  there 
are  two  ^Ivantages  which  a  stranger,  or  at  least  a  stranger  who  is  also  an 
Englishman,  with  some  practical  knowledge  of  English  politics  and 
English  law,  may  hope  to  secure."  What  these  advantages  are,  we  will 
leave  to  Mr.  Bryce  himself  to  state,  submitting  his  description  as  a  fair 
sample  of  his  literary  style.  Such  a  writer 'Ms  struck  by  some  things 
which  a  native  does  not  think  of  explaining,  because  they  are  too  obvi- 
ous, and  whose  influence  on  politics  or  society  he  forgets  to  estimate, 
since  they  seem  to  him  part  of  the  order  of  nature.  And  the  stranger 
finds  it  easier  to  maintain  a  position  of  detachment,  detachment  not 
only  from  party  prejudice,  but  from  those  prepossessions  in  favor  of  per- 
sons, groups,  constitutional  dogmas,  national  pretensions,  which  a  citi- 
zen can  scarcely  escape  except  by  falling  into  the  attitude  of  impartial 
cynicism  which  sours  and  perverts  the  historical  mind  as  much  as  preju- 
dice itself." 

Following  these  lines,  Mr.  Bryce  has  produced  a  book  which  leaves 
both  Americans  and  English-speaking  foreigners  without  an  excuse  for 
hereafter  remaining  in  ignorance  of  our  institutians  and  mode  of  life. 
How  he  has  accomplished  his  task  he  himself  describes  in  this  pen-picture  : 
''  He  who  regards  a  wide  landscape  from  a  distant  height,  sees  its  de- 
tails imperfectly,  and  must  unfold  his  map  in  order  to  make  out  where  each 
village  lies,  and  how  the  roads  run  from  point  to  point.  But  he  catches 
the  true  perspective  of  things  better  than  if  he  were  standing  among 
them.  The  great  features  of  the  landscape,  the  valleys,  slopes  and  moun- 
tains, appear  in  their  relative  proportion  ;  he  can  estimate  the  height  of 
the  peaks  and  the  breadth  of  the  plains." 

The  True  Spouse  of  Jesus  Christ.  With  an  Appendix  and  various  Small  Works 
and  Spiritual  Letters.  By  St.  Alphofisus  de  Liguori,  Doctor  of  the  Church.  In 
two  volumes,  forming  part  of  the  Centennary  Edition  of  the  Complete  Works  of 
St.  Alphonsus.  Edited  by  Rev.  Eugene  Grimm,  Priest  of  the  Congregation  of 
the  Most  Holy  Redeemer.  New  York,  Cincinnati,  and  Chicago :  Benziger  Bros., 
Printers  to  the  Apostolic  See. 

The  good  that  men  do,  the  poet  has  said,  is  not  interred  with  their 
bones.  Fortunately  for  the  world,  the  law  is  universal.  It  were,  indeed, 
sad  for  the  world  if  such  had  not  been  the  case,  and  if  the  works  of  great 
and  good  men  did  not  live  after  them  to  remind  and  teach  us  "  how  to 
make  our  lives  sublime."  Pre-eminently  sad  would  it  have  been,  and 
greatly  to  be  deplored,  if  the  works  of  St.  Alphonsus  de  Liguori,  the 

1 86  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

crystallization  of  his  wisdom  and  piety,  had  not  been  handed  down  to  us. 
They  may  not,  indeed,  have  made  sublime  the  lives  of  all  who  have  read 
them,  but  they  have  undoubtedly  influenced  them  for  good,  and  tended 
to  draw  them  nearer  to  God,  and  thus  have  made  men  better  and  holier. 
Whether  it  be  in  the  domain  of  theology  or  of  asceticism  that  we  con- 
sider the  Saint,  great  is  the  good  he  has  done,  and  is  doing  to  the  be- 
lievino- world.  Few  are  the  Church's  illustrious  sons,  revered  worthily 
and  beloved  though  they  be,  whose  memory  is  so  cherished  and  rever- 
enced as  is  that  of  St.  Alphonsus.  Many  are  the  theological  wo-ks  that 
have  been  written  since  his  day,  yet  to  the  great  treatise  on  Moral  The- 
ology which  bears  his  name  we  turn  with  a  pleasure  and  profit  that  others 
with  all  their  merits  fail  to  give  us.  It  is  like  going  to  the  fountain- 
head,  where  the  waters  are  coolest  and  clearest,  instead  of  drinking  of 
them' after  they  have  flowed  along  their  channels  for  many  a  league,  and 
lost  their  freshness  and  limpid  purity.  And,  as  with  his  great  work  on 
Moral  Theology,  so  with  his  ascetical  writings.  Though  old,  they  seem 
ever  new,  ever  fresh  and  vigorous,  ever  instructive.  Like  the  Church 
herself,  whose  spirit  they  breathe,  they  shine  forth  clearer  and  stronger 
with  the  advancing  years.  \ 

In  a  special  way  these  words  are  applicable  to  the  work  before  us, 
"The  True  Spouse  of  Jesus  Christ."  It  is  some  years  now  since  this 
work  was  first  given  to  the  public  in  an  English  translation.  From  the 
beginning,  its  high  worth  was  appreciated.  It  was  doubly  precious.  It 
was  precious  for  its  own  intrinsic  value,  and  precious  for  its  timeliness, 
supplying,  as  it  did,  a  long-felt  want  in  the  lives  of  Religious  in  this 
country  and  other  English-speaking  countries. 

The  edition  before  us  constitutes  the  tenth  and  eleventh  volumes  of 
"The  Centennary  Edition"  of  the  Saint's  works.  It  has  been  edited 
with  great  care  and  conspicuous  ability.  Though  "  The  True  Spouse  of 
Jesus  Christ  "  was  written  expressly  for  Nuns,  it  contains  also  much  that 
is  profitable  and  needful,  not  only  for  all  classes  of  Religious,  but  for 
those  also  who  live  in  the  world.  No  one,  in  whatever  calling  in  life, 
can  read  it  and  fail  to  profit  by  it.  But  to  those  who,  in  the  Religious 
life,  have  given  themselves  to  God,  the  work  is  particularly  addressed. 
It  aims  at  a  portrayal  of  the  ti'ue  Spouse  of  Jesus  Christ. 

That  for  such  a  work  St.  Alphonsus  was  eminently  and  peculiarly 
fitted  no  one  can  reasonably  deny.  He  was  a  Religious,  day  in  and  day 
out,  specially  consecrated  to  God.  He  was  the  founder  of  a  Religious 
Order;  a  man,  moreover,  of  unusual  attainments,  and  of  large  experi- 
ence in  the  guidance  of  Religious  souls.  He  knew  the  ideal  which  the 
Church  has  set  before  her  Religious.  He  knew  also,  from  intimate  rela- 
tions with  that  part  of  Christ's  kingdom,  the  obstacles  which  stood  in 
the  way  of  the  attainment  of  that  ideal,  as  well  as  the  helps  that  aided 
its  realization. 

In  the  opening  chapters  of  his  work,  he  speaks  of  the  excellence  of 
the  Religious  state  and  its  advantages.  He  treats  this  from  a  two-fold 
point  of  view;  first,  showing  from  Scriptural  citations  the  preciousness 
of  virginity  in  the  sight  of  God,  and,  secondly,  its  suitableness  and  fa- 
vora>bleness  to  a  perfect  service  of  God  in  this  world.  This  second  point 
he  brings  out  most  clearly  by  referring  to  St.  Paul,  who,  speaking  on  the 
same  subject,  says  that  the  unmarried  woman  and  the  virgin  "  thinketh 
that  she  may  be  holy  both  in  body  and  spirit,  but  she  that  is  married 
thinketh  on  the  things  of  the  world  and  how  she  may  please  her  hus- 
band." The  Religious  state  is,  in  the  words  of  the  Saint,  as  it  is  in  the 
-estimation  of  all  earnest,  thoughtful  men,  the  surest  way  to  salvation. 

Book  Notices.  i37 

Not  that  the  Saint  says  or  thinks  that  all  who  enter  into  that  state  shall 
be  saved— for  he  admits,  and  plainly  says,  that  it  has  its  dangers  and 
pitfalls— but  because  of  the  protection  with  which  it  is  hedged  around 
and  the  special  graces  with  which  God  blesses  it. 

Having  treated  of  the  excellence  of  the  Religious  life  from  this  two- 
fold point  of  view,  the  Saint  gives  us  his  idea  of  a  true  Spouse  of  Christ. 
The  espousal  of  the  Religious  he  holds  to  be  a  true  and  perfect  espousalj 
a  solemn  consecration  of  one's-self  to  God,  a  becoming  thereby  one 
with  Him  ;  one  heart,  and  mind,  and  soul,  wholly  and  entirely  His. 
The  true  spouse  of  Jesus  Christ  will,  therefore,  be  in  heart  and  will,  in 
thought,  and  word,  and  deed,  in  her  whole  life,  a  copy  of  her  Master. 
His  ways,  then,  will  be  her  ways;  His  virtues  her  virtues. 

Carrying  out  that  thought,  St.  Alphonsus  devotes  most  of  the  subse- 
quent part  of  his  work  to  a  consideration  of  the  virtues  which  so  emi- 
nently befit  a  Religious,  and  without  which  she  cannot  be  what  she  pro- 
fesses and  aspires  to  be — a  true  spouse  of  Jesus  Christ.  There  must  be, 
he  tells  us,  interior  mortification  ;  there  must  also  be  exterior  mortifica- 
tion. The  true  Religious  can  have  no  will.  For  where  there  is  self- 
will  there  is  also  self-love,  and  consequently  not  an  entire  giving  up  of 
self  to  God.  On  the  humility  both  of  heart  and  intellect,  which  Re- 
ligious must  possess;  on  the  fraternal  charity  which  must  ever  guide 
them  in  their  dealings  with  mankind  ;  on  the  patience  that  must  possess 
their  souls ;  of  the  great  necessity  of  mental  prayer — needful  to  a  Re- 
ligious as  air  is  to  life — St.  Alphonsus  dwells  with  great  clearness  and 

There  are  some  who  think  the  Saint  has  gone  too  far  into  details,  and 
that  it  would  have  been  better  had  he  not  treated  upon  some  matters  to 
which  he  has  drawn  attention.  But  this  is  a  grave  mistake.  Men  are 
not  angels ;  and  sensible  mortals  do  not  look  for  perfection  in  this  life. 
If,  in  the  past.  Religious  have  not  been  all  that  they  ought  to  have  been, 
it  is  for  us  to  learn  from  their  shortcomings  that  our  duty  is  higher.  This 
work  of  St.  Alphonsus  is  estimated  at  its  true  value  by  those  to  whom  it 
is  especially  addressed — the  Religious  in  our  convents — and,  if  there  be 
one  thing  more  than  another  for  which  it  is  prized,  it  is  because  the 
Saint  lays  his  finger  upon  their  weaknesses,  and,  having  done  so,  points 
out  to  them  the  way  to  overcome  such  obstacles  to  the  attainment  of 
God's  perfect  love.  Not  the  least  valuable  part  of  the  work  is  the  ap- 
pendix, covering  more  than  three  hundred  pages  of  the  second  volume. 
For  the  most  part  it  contains  Exhortations  addressed  to  the  nuns  of  Re- 
ligious communities,  and  Spiritual  Letters  written  to  Religious  and  per- 
sons called  to  a  Religious  state.  They  are  full  of  sweetness  and  wisdom, 
and  we  are  sure  will  be  fully  appreciated  by  all  who  are  in  earnest  in 
the  work  of  saving  their  souls,  and  especially  by  those  who  have  conse- 
crated themselves  to  God,  and  are  desirous  of  being  His  loyal,  loving,  and 
true  spouses. 

Readers  should  ever  bear  in  mind  that  the  author  is  a  Saint,  and  there- 
fore his  words  and  counsels  are  deserving  of  far  more  than  common  in- 
terest. To  what  extent  God  inspired  the  Saint  in  writing  this  work,  is 
not  given  us  to  know,  but  we  feel  we  are  not  going  beyond  the  truth 
when  we  say  that  it  must  have  been  the  fruit  of  many  prayers,  and  of 
much  communion  with  God.  The  work,  therefore,  should  .be  in  the 
hands  of  all  who  seek  perfection,  who  love  God,  and  wish  to  dwell  with 
Him  hereafter.  It  will  draw  them  nearer  to  God,  teach  them  to  walk  in 
His  perfect  ways  ;  it  will  be  to  them  a  lamp  in  the  darkness,  and  a  staft 
in  their  weakness. 

1 88  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 


Tomus  I.  Edidit  S.  Hurter,  S.  /.,  S.  Theolog.  et  Philos.  Doctor,  Ejusdem 
S.  Theolog.  in  C.  R.  Universitate  CEnipontana  Professore  P.  O.  Cum  Appn^ba- 
tione  Celsissimi  et  Reverendissimi  Episcopi  Brixinensis  et  Facilitate  Superiorum. 
Editio  Sexta  Aucta  et  Emendata.  CEniponte  Libraria  Academica  Wagneriana. 

That  the  excellence  of  Father  Hurler's  work  has  been  appreciated  we 
have  undoubted  proof  in  the  fact  that  the  volume  before  us  is  the  first 
of  a  new  and  sixth  edition.  The  Rev.  Father  tells  us,  and  from  a  perusal 
of  the  volume  it  becomes  quite  evident,  that  he  has  taken  advantage  of 
the  present  edition  to  enlarge  and  correct  his  work. 

We  have  not  here  the  space  to  attempt  a  broad  and  thorough  criticism 
of  this  admirable  book.  We  do  not  claim  for  it  the  highest  excellence. 
There  are  works  on  the  same  subject  which  we  prefer.  Still  it  must  be 
admitted  that  Father  Hurter's  book  holds  a  highly  respectable  position 
among  works  of  that  kind.  His  treatment  of  the  great  question  of 
Divine  Revelation  is  especially  worthy  of  commendation.  It  is  quite 
thorough  and  searching  in  its  clear  and  exact  examination  and  elucida- 
tion of  the  subject.  Nor  does  Father  Hurter  fail  to  give  satisfaction  in 
that  part  of  his  book  which  is  devoted  to  the  exposition  of  the  nature 
and  foundation  and  claims  of  the  Church.     Here  his  work  is  strong. 

Whilst  the  plan  and  general  treatment  of  this  part  of  his  book  are 
open  to  criticism  and  have  undoubtedly  evoked  honest  objection,  and, 
to  our  mind,  are  inferior  to  the  work  of  Mazella  on  the  same  subject, 
we  must  however  bear  testimony  that  the  Rev.  author  has  performed  his 
task  with  far  more  than  ordinary  success.  Upon  the  question  of  the 
Church's  prerogatives,  as  well  as  of  those  which  pertain  to  her  Visible 
Head,  he  is  clear  and  sound.  The  great  truth  of  the  infallibility  of  the 
Sovereign  Pontiff  of  the  Church  he  treats  ably  and  learnedly.  Of 
course  upon  this  truth  he  throws  no  new  light.  The  arguments  he 
adduces  are  familiar  to  all  students  of  theology.  But  in  this  there  can 
be  no  reasonable  ground  for  disappointment.  In  the  treatment  of  this 
great  and  important  subject  by  theologians  of  our  day,  what  we  look 
for  is  clearness  of  exposition  and  soundness  of  argument,  and  both  of 
these  we  have  in  Father  Hurter's  treatise. 

Incidentally  in  the  treatment  of  the  subject  the  Rev.  author  speaks  of 
the  timeliness  of  the  Church's  definition  of  the  dogma.  This  has  been 
from  the  beginning  a  vexed  question.  Great  and  good  men  have  been 
on  the  one  side,  and  great  and  good  men  on  the  other.  Our  author 
takes  the  ground  that  the  time  had  come  for  the  Church  to  speak  out 
clearly  and  authoritatively  on  the  subject.  Whether  the  great  minds  of 
our  age  agree  with  him  in  this  view  of  the  question,  matters  not.  At 
most  it  is  now  a  mere  problem  or  theory.  For  the  Church's  solemn 
declaration  has  practically  ended  the  question.     Our  duty  is  plain. 

The  fourth  and  concluding  part  of  the  work  before  us  the  Rev.  author 
devotes  to  the  subject  of  faith.  He  treats  it  from  a  threefold  aspect : 
First,  from  that  of  man  believing ;  second,  the  relation  between  faith  and 
knowledge;  and  third,  the  rule  of  faith  in  the  concrete.  To  the  ex- 
position of  these  three  our  author  devotes  many  pages.  ■  There  is  no 
denying  that  the  subject  of  faith  is  a  subtle  one  and  demands  of  him 
who  essays  to  enter  deeply  into  it  unusual  ability.  We  feel  sure  that 
Father  Hurter  has  performed  his  difficult  task  in  a  way  that  must  be 
eminently  satisfactory  to  students  of  theology.  He  is  always  clear, 
always  safe.  In  doubtful  issues  he  is  always  on  the  side  of  the  great 
Doctors  of  the  Church. 

We  can,  therefore,  safely  commend   Father  Hurter's   work.     As  a 

Book  Notices, 


text-book  it  may  not  be  all  we  could  desire,  but  the  student  of  theology 
will  ever  find  it  a  safe  and  trustworthy  guide. 

Sometimes  we  hear  it  said,  and  by  those,  too,  who  know  whereof  they 
speak,  that  devotion  and  practical  morality  are  losing  ground  and  are 
not  near  what  they  ought  to  be.  May  not  this  sad  fact  be  attributable 
to  the  scant  knowledge  men  have  of  God  and  their  faith?  Dogma  is 
undoubtedly  the  source  of  devotion,  and  knowledge  is  love.  What  I 
do  not  know,  I  cannot  love.  Not  knowing  God  as  they  should  and 
having  scarcely  a  faint  notion,  even,  of  the  beauties  of  their  faith,  we 
cannot  expect  men  to  be  other  than  they  are.  What  they  want  is  more 
dogma,  more  knowledge  of  God,  a  clearer  insight  into  the  beauties  of 
their  faith.  With  such  works  as  Father  Hurter's  at  command,  our  cler- 
gymen will  be  better  equipped,  and  consequently  better  able  to  instruct 
our  people.  Hence  the  great  good  and  high  value  of  sound  and  trust- 
worthy works  on  Dogmatic  Theology. 

God  Knowable  and  Known.     By  Rev.  Maurice  Ronayne,  S.  /.,  Author  of  "  Reli- 
gion and  Science."     New  York,  Cincinnati,  Chicago:  Benziger  Bros.     1888. 

The  purpose  of  this  book  is  to  furnish,  to  persons  willing  to  think, 
arguments  that  bear  on  the  existence  and  knowableness  of  God.  The 
author  frankly  and  modestly  disclaims  having  either  invented  or  dis- 
covered the  arguments  he  presents.  He  says,  and  truly,  that  in  their 
general  outlines  they  have  been  before  the  human  mind  during  all 
ages.  But  those  arguments  are  just  as  available  at  present,  in  the  warfare 
with  infidelity,  as  in  any  period  of  the  past,  and  they  need  only,  as  it 
were,  to  be  refurbished  anew,  that  they  may  be  perfectly  well  fitted  for 
modern  use.  To  give  the  reasoning  greater  point  and  to  answer  various 
objections,  the  author  has  cast  a  great  part  of  the  arguments  into  the 
form  of  discussions.  The  places,  times,  and  persons  in  these  discussions 
have  been  feigned  in  order  to  give  more  vivid  and  practical  reality  to 
the  arguments.  The  work  is  opportune  as  dealing  with  questions  which, 
especially  at  this  time,  are  earnestly  debated.  Its  method,  too,  and 
arrangement  of  topics  are  highly  judicious.  The  arguments  are  pre- 
sented in  a  form  that  is  free  from  all  needless  technicality,  and  the 
language  in  which  they  are  expressed  is  as  simple  as  the  nature  of  the 
questions  discussed  will  permit. 

In  pursuance  of  his  plan  the  author  very  properly  commences  with 
showing  that  all  nature  witnesses  to  God.  He  shows  from  the  very 
nature  of  matter  itself— the  fact  that  it  is  finite  and  contingent — that  it 
requires,  to  account  for  its  existence,  the  existence  of  an  independent, 
absolute,  self-existing,  first  cause.  He  then  answers  the  various  objec- 
tions of  those  who  assert  that  matter  is  uncreated,  and  proves  that  their 
different  objections,  almost  without  exception,  involve  the  logical  error 
of  first  assuming  as  undeniable  the  very  point  they  are  required  to  prove 
and  then  building  upon  it  as  though  it  had  been  conceded.  He  passes 
in  review  the  ideas  on  this  subject  of  Darwin,  Herbert  Spencer,  Huxley, 
Mill,  Hamilton,  Locke  and  Hume,  tracing  them  back  to  ancient  Greek 
and  Roman  soi)hists  and  exposing  their  fallacies. 

The  second  chapter  treats  the  very  important  subject,  ''The  Data  of 
Natural  Knowledge."  The  third,  fourth,  and  fifth  chapters,  respec- 
tively, have  to  do  with  ''God  our  Creator,"  "The  Vestiges  of  God  m 
Creation,"  and  "The  Human  Race  bears  Testimony  to  God."  The  fifth 
chapter,  extending  over  fifty  pages,  is  occupied  with  the  subject  of 
Buddhism,  its  history,  leading  ideas,  and  errors.  We  regard  this  chap- 
ter as  one  of  the  most  timely,  as  well  as  one  of  the  most  satisfactory,  m 
the  whole  work.     Buddhism  is  a  pretentious  and  subtle  system,  and  some 

IQO  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

of  its  most  pernicious  errors  find  congenial  soil  in  the  materialism  and 
pessimism  of  our  age. 

The  next  six  chapters  are  occupied  respectively  with  the  following 
subjects:  "God  in  the  Moral  World,"  "The  Nature  of  the  Human 
Soul— Its  Immortality,"  "Conscience  as  a  Witness  to  God,"  "The 
Proofs  of  Conscience  Confirmed,"  "  The  Knowledge  of  God  Attainable 
by  all  Men,"  "St.  Augustine's  Soliloquy  with  God." 

The  work  concludes  with  a  valuable  *'  Appendix,"  containing  a  refu- 
tation of  Darwinism ;  an  exposure  of  errors  and  fallacies  in  the  article 
on  "Theism"  in  the  "Encyclopaedia  Britannica;"  an  account  of  the 
"  Sacred  Books  of  the  East,  and  a  Brief  Treatise  on  the  different  Names 
of  God." 

The  work,  as  we  have  said,  is  a  timely  one,  and  of  permanent  value. 
It  will  be  especially  of  practical  use  to  persons  who  are  frequently 
brought  into  contact  with  infidels  and  skeptics ;  for  it  will  furnish  them 
with  weapons  ready  for  use  to  expose  their  errors  and  demolish  their 
sophistical  fallacies. 

Miscellanies.     By  Henry  Edward,  Cardinal  Archbishop  of  Westminster.    Vol.  III. 
London:  Burns  &  Gates.     New  York :  Catholic  Publication  Society  Co.  1888. 

This  volume  is  truly  multu?n  in  parvo.  Cardinal  Manning  is  well 
known  to  be  a  concise  as  well  as  a  lucid  writer,  well  able  to  place  his 
subject  in  strong  light  before  his  readers,  without  circumlocution  and 
with  few  words.  It  would  be  difficult  to  find,  among  all  our  current  litera- 
ture, a  book  more  replete  with  important  historical  facts  and  pregnant 
thoughts  logically  arranged  and  clearly  set  forth,  than  is  the  volume  be- 
fore us.  The  subjects,  too,  which  it  treats  are  subjects  which,  without 
exception,  are  vitally  connected  with  burning  questions  of  our  own 
times,  or  have  a  direct  bearing  upon  them. 

All  the  papers,  too,  which  the  volume  comprises,  are  taken  from  the 
writings  of  Cardinal  Manning  during  the  last  few  years,  the  earliest 
of  them  dating  back  only  to  1880.  They  may  be  taken,  therefore,  as 
embodying  the  ripest  experience  and  reflection,  of  one  who  has  closely 
studied  men  and  things,  and  living  facts  as  well  as  books,  for  upwards 
of  fifty  years  of  adult  manhood,  and  who  has  been  himself  magna  pars 
of  many  important  movements  of  his  times. 

Some  of  the  papers  treat  subjects  of  universal  importance ;  others 
discuss  questions  which,  at  first  thought,  judging  them  merely  by  their 
title,  apply  only  to  the  social,  political,  or  religious  condition  of  Eng- 
land. But  the  subjects  of  this  last-mentioned  character  are  examined 
and  treated  in  such  broad  and  comprehensive  manner,  and  on  the  basis 
of  principles  which  are  of  such  universal  application,  that  they  will  be 
read,  not  only  with  interest,  but  with  great  profit,  by  citizens  of  all 

A  number  of  these  papers  discuss  profoundly  (not  profoundly  in  the 
sense  of  resorting  to  technical  methods,  but  profoundly  as  going  to  the 
central  root  of  the  matter),  and  practically,  the  burning  subject  of  edu- 
cation. They  treat  it  from  different  sides,  and  set  forth,  with  axiomatic 
clearness  and  force,  the  ideas  and  principles  which  ought  to  rule  and 
govern  this  whole  important  subject  in  its  bearings  upon  the  rights  and 
duties  of  children,  the  rights  and  duties  of  parents,  the  relations  of  chil- 
dren and  of  parents  to  society  and  civil  government  and  to  the  Church, 
and  the  rights,  duties,  authority,  and  power  of  the  State,  on  the  one  hand, 
and  of  the  Church,  on  the  other,  to  children  and  to  parents,  as  regards 

Another  class  of  papers  in  the  volume  sets  forth,  under  various  titles, 
such  as  "Atheism  and  the  Constitution  of  England,"  "Without  God, 

Book  Notices,  igi 

No  Commonwealth,"  "Parliamentary  Oaths,"  etc.,  and  with  reference 
to  different  practical  applications  of  the  same  general  truth,  the  relation 
of  religion  to  human  society  and  civil  government.  Others  of  these 
papers  deal  with  important  practical  social  subjects,  such  as  '<Our  Na- 
tional Vice"  (a  lucid  and  powerful  exposition  of  the  evils  of  intem- 
perance) ;  *' Pleading  for  the  Worthless"  ''Out-door  Relief,"  ''The 
Law  of  Nature,  Divine  and  Supreme"  (an  article  published  in  the 
American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review  on  the  right  of  the  starving  to 
bread),  etc.  Still  other  papers  are  on  subjects  of  a  more  strictly  eccle- 
siastical character,  discussed  broadly  and  in  their  general  relations  to 
human  society,  such  as  "The  Salvation  Army,"  "The  Catholic  Church 
and  Modern  Society,"  "The  Soul  Before  and  After  Death,"  "The 
Church  its  Own  Witness,"  etc. 

It  is  scarcely  necessary  for  us  to  add,  after  this  statement  of  the  con- 
tents of  the  volume,  that  it  will  not  only  interest  and  instruct  intelligent 
readers,  but  will  also  serve  as  a  valuable  hand-book  to  speakers  who  wish 
to  quickly  furnish  themselves  with  facts  and  thoughts  upon  the  many 
important  subjects  which  it  treats. 

The  Life  of  St.  Ignatius  of  Loyola.  By  Father  Genelli,  of  the  Society  of  Jesus. 
Translated  from  the  German  by  M.  Charles  Sainte  Foi,  and  rendered  from  the 
French  by  the  Rev.  Thomas  Meyrick,  S.  J.  New  York,  Cincinnati  and  Chicago  : 
Benziger  Brothers.     1889. 

It  is  indeed  by  a  roundabout  way  that  this  book  has  reached  us.  But 
perhaps  it  has  gained  rather  than  lost  merit  in  its  circuitous  course,  for 
it  is  made  to  appear  in  very  good  English  and  a  simple  style  that  is  far 
more  easily  adopted  from  the  French  than  the  German.  But  the  strictest 
fidelity  to  originals,  even  of  idiom,  is  observed  in  one  particular — Father 
Genelli,  M.  Sainte  Foi  and  Father  Meyrick,  in  quoting  the  writings  of 
St.  Ignatius,  adhere,  as  much  as  possible,  not  only  to  the  sense,  but  as 
well  to  the  construction  and  the  mannerism  of  the  phrase.  M.  Sainte 
Foi  thus  gives  the  reason  for  this  course :  "I  have  chosen  to  sacrifice 
the  beauty  of  a  free  translation  to  the  preservation  of  the  original,  so 
that  the  reader  in  perusing  it  may  recognize,  not  only  the  meaning  of 

the  author,  but  his  very  spirit  and  way  of  expressing  it I  have 

done  it  not  only  out  of  respect  for  the  great  Saint  whose  life  I  here 
give,  but  for  the  love  of  truth  and  for  the  advantage  of  those  readers 
who  like  to  find  in  the  words  of  great  men,  and  of  Saints  especially, 
the  peculiar  stamp  which  distinguishes  their  character." 

There  were  so  many  lives  of  the  founder  of  the  Society  of  Jesus 
already  in  the  hands  of  the  public  that  it  may  well  be  asked  why  this 
one  has  been  added  to  the  list,  and  that  too  at  a  time  when  he  and  his 
Society  are  in  great  disfavor  in  many  countries.  But  Father  Genelli 
had  more  than  one  very  praiseworthy  object  in  view.  He  had  "a 
taste  for  that  method  of  historical  pursuit  which  by  close  observation  of 
facts  throw  clearer  light  upon  the  character  of  times  and  persons." 
He  had  "  observed  that  the  lives  of  St.  Ignatius  hitherto  published  have 
kept  rather  to  the  surface  of  things,  without  endeavoring  to  trace  out 
their  connection  or  to  dive  into  the  motives  which  actuated  this^ great 
man,  or  into  the  world  of  thought  which  was  awakened  in  his  soul."  He 
had  wanted  to  refute  "  the  unfounded  supposition  made  by. those  who 
pretend  that  the  Society  of  Jesus  is  not  what  it  was  when  St.  Ignatius 
founded  it."  For  these  and  other  reasons  he  undertook  to  write  this 
new  life,  in  which  he  lets  the  Saint  paint  his  own  character  by  means  of 
his  letters  and  other  writings.  Father  Genelli  has  fully  availed  himself 
of  the  recent  progress  made  in  historical  research,  and  has  produced  a 
work  that  throws  much  light,  not  only  on  the  subject  of  the  biography, 

1^2  Antencaii  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

but  also  on  the  age  in  which  he  lived.     This  book  deserves  to  take  the 
place  of  a  standard  biography. 

Catholic  Worship.     The  Sacraments,  Ceremonies  and  Festivals   of  the   Church 

explained  in  Questions  and  Answers.     By  Rev.  O.  Gisler.     Translated  from  the 

German  by  Rev.  Richard  Brennan,  LL  D.     New  York,  Cincinnati  and  Chicago  : 

Benziger  Brothers. 

Besides  the  answers  to  the  questions  there  are  added  almost  on  every 

page  supplementary  explanations  that  throw  much  additional  light  on 

the  subjects  discussed.     Throughout  the  whole  book  the  language  is 

clear  and  simple.     Everything  about  it  goes  to  make  this  little  volume 

eminently  useful  as  a  book  of  religious  instruction  in  general,  but  more 

especially  in  the  Sunday  School,  where  every  teacher  should  use  it. 

American  Ecclesiastical  Review  (Monthly).  No.  i,  January,  1889.  New  York 
and  Cincinnati :  Fr.  Pustet  &  Co. 

This  is  a  periodical  intended  to  discuss  subjects  relating  to  Theology, 
Canon  law,  and  church  discipline.  It  is  edited  by  Reverend  H.  J. 
Heuser,  of  Philadelphia.  Father  Heuser  is  a  Professor  in  the  Theo- 
logical Seminary  of  St.  Charles  Borromeo,  and  is  well  qualified  for  the 
important  position  to  which  he  has  been  called. 


The  Life  of  Blessed  Martin.  De  Porres  (a  negro  Saint),  of  the  Third  Order  of 
St.  Dominic,  in  the  Province  of  St.  John  Baptist,  of  Peru.  Translated  from  the 
\i-d\\zxi\)y  Lady  Herbert.  New  York  :  The  Catholic  Publication  Society  Co.  1889. 

Sermons  at  Mass.  By  the  Rev.  Patrick  O' Keafe,  C.  C,  author  of  "  Moral  Dis- 
courses."    Dublin  :  M.  H.  Gill  &  Son.     1888. 

Selections  from  the  Sermons  of  Padre  Agostino  Da  Montefaltro.  Edited 
by  Catharine  Mary  Phillimore.     London :  The  Church  Printing  Company. 

From  the  World  to  the  Cloister  ;  or,  My  Narrative.  By  Bernard.  London  : 
Kegan  Paul,  Trench  &  Co.     1888. 

Lourdes,  its  Inhabitants,  its  Pilgrims,  and  its  Miracles.  With  an  Account 
of  the  Apparitions  at  the  Grotto,  and  a  Sketch  of  Bernadette's  Subsequent  His- 
tory. By  Richard  Clarke,  S.  J,  New  York,  Cincinnati,  and  Chicago :  Ben- 
ziger Brothers.     1888. 

Aroer,  the  Story  of  a  Vocation.  New  York  :  The  Catholic  Publication  Society 
Co.     London  :  Burns  &  Gates. 

Life  of  Lady  Georgiana  Fullerton.  From  the  French  of  Mrs.  Augustus  Craven. 
By  Henry  James  Coleridge,  S.J.     London  :  Richard  Bentley  &  Son.     1888. 

Six  Sermons  on  Devotion  to  the  Sacred  Heart.  By  Rev.  E%vald  Bierbaum, 
D  D.  Translated  from  the  German  by  Miss  Ella  MacMahon.  New  York, 
Cincinnati,  and  Chicago  :  Benziger  Brothers.     1888. 

Records  of  the  English  Catholics  of  1715.  Compiled  wholly  from  Original 
Documents.  Edited  by  John  Or lebar  Payne,  M.A.  London:  Burns  &  Gates. 
New  York:  Catholic  Publication  Society  Co.     1889. 

Characteristics  from  the  Writings  of  Archbishop  Ullathorne,  with  Bib- 
liographical Introduction.  Arranged  by  the  Rev.  Michael  F.  Glancey,  late 
of  St.  Mary's  College,  Oscott.  New  York :  The  Catholic  Publication  Society 
Co.     London:  Burns  &  Gates,  limited.     1889. 

Leaves  from  St.  John  Chrysostom.  Selected  and  Translated  by  Mary  H  Allies. 
Edited,j,with  a  Preface,  by  T.  W.  Allies,  K.  C.  S.  G.  New  York :  Catholic  Pub- 
lication Society.     London:  Burns  &  Gates.     1889. 

Letters  to  Persons  in  Religion.  With  Introduction  by  Bishop  Hedley,  and  Fac- 
simile of  the  Saint's  Handwriting.  New  York:  The  Catholic  Publication^ 
Society  Co.     London  :  Burns  &  Gates.     1888. 

e:ducational   directory. 

St.  Mary's  College, 

Marion  County,  Kentucky,  possesses  the  advan- 
tages of  a  most  healthful  country  locality,  free 
from  all  distractions;  enforces  diligence  and 
discipline  strictly,  and  is  able  to  give  boys  excel- 
lent instruction  and  unusually  good  board  and 
treatment  at  very  reasonable  rates.  For  cata- 
logue write  to 

Rev.  David  Fennessy,  C.R., 

St.  Mary's,  Ky. 

Mt.  de  Chantal, 

A  school  for  young  ladies,  near  Wheeling,  \V.  Va. 
Full  English,  Mathematical  and  Classical  course. 
A  fine  Library  is  at  the  command  of  the  stu- 
dents. Modern  Languages,  Drawing  and  Faint- 
ing. Complete  graded  course  in  Vocal  and 
Instrumental  Music.  Location  unsurpassed  for 
beauty  and  health.  Ten  acres  of  pleasure 
grounds.    Board  excellent.    Apply  to 

The  Directress. 

Mt.  St.  Joseph  Academy, 

Chestnut  Hill,  Phila.  Conducted  by  the  Sisters 
of  St.  Joseph.  This  Institution  offers  exceptional 
facilities  for  the  acquisition  of  a  thorough  Eng- 
lish education. 

Special  students  in  Music  will  find  the  Course 
and  Methods  pursued  very  conducive  to  rapid 
advancement.   Full  particulars  in  catalogue,  for 

which  apply  to 

Mother  Superior. 

St.  Mary's  Academy. 

The  Thirty-third  Academic  Year  will  open  on 
the  first  Monday  in  September,  1888.  School  of 
Art  and  Design.  Conservatory  of  Music  on  the 
plan  of  best  conservatories  of  Europe.  Acade- 
mic course  is  thorough  in  the  Preparatory,  Senior 
and  Classical  grades.  Drawing  and  Painting 
from  Life  and  the  Antique,  Phonography  and 
Type-Writing  taught.    Apply  for  catalogue  to 

Mother  Superior, 

St.  Mary's  Academy,  Notre  Dame,  St.  Joseph  Co., 


Preparatory  School  for  Boys 

Fayetteville,  Brown  County,  Ohio. 

For  boys  between  the  ages  of  3  and  12.  Con- 
ducted by  the  Sisters  of  Charity.  Reopens  first 
week  in  September.    Terms  very  liberal. 

For  particulars  and  terms  apply  to  Cedak 
G'rove  Academy,  Price  Hill,  Cincinnati,  Ohio ; 
Sisters  of  Charity,  Fayetteville,  Brown  Co., 
Ohio,  or  any  of  the  Catholic  Clergy  of  the  city. 

Sisters  of  the  Visitation. 

Academy  of  the  Visitation.'  Mount  de  Sales, 
Catonsville,  Md. 

This  Institution  offers  every  advantage  to 
young  ladies  wishing  to  receive  a  solid  and 
refined  education.     Terms  moderate. 

St,  Joseph's  Seminary 

For  Colored  Missions.  There  are  in  the  Southern 
States  over  6,000,000  Negroes,  of  whom  not  100,000 
are  Catholics.  The  various  Protestant  sects 
claim  but  3,000,000,  thus  leaving  over  3,000,000 
who  belong  to  no  church.  A  double  duty,  as 
Catholics  and  Americans,  lies  upon  us.  St. 
Joseph's  Seminary  will  help  in  part  to  fulfil 
these  duties.  It  needs  subjects,  who  will  devote 
themselves  to  this  Apostolic  work.  It  is  entirely 
dependent  on  alms.    Address 

Rev.  John  R.  Slattery,  Rector, 

St.  Joseph's  Seminary,  Baltimore,  Md. 

St.  Mary's  Academic  Insti- 

TUTE  (DIOCESE  OF  viNCENNEs),  St.  Mary's  of  the 
Woods,  Vigo  County,  Ind.  The  pupils  of  this 
spacious  and  elegantly  finished  and  furnished 
Institute  enjoy,  at  very  low  rates,  every  advant- 
age conducive  to  pleasure  and  health,  together 
with  unrivalled  facilities  for  acquiring  thorough  and 
accomplished  education.  The  scholastic  year 
begins  September  1st.  For  terms  and  other  par- 
ticulars, address 

Sister  Superior, 

St.  Mary's,  Vigo  Co.,  Indiana. 

Georgetown  Academy  of  the 

Visitation  of  the  Blessed  Virgin.  Delight- 
fully situated  on  Georgetown  Heights,  near  the 
National  Capital.    Founded  1799.    Address, 

Sisters  of  the  Visit.a.tion, 
Georgetown  Academy,  West  Washington,  D.  C. 

Academy  Mt.  St.  Vincent- 

on-the-Hudson,  New  York  City.  The  Institution 
covers  sixty-three  acres ;  a  large  portion  of  the 
grounds  is  thrown  open  to  Llie  pupils. 

The  course  of  study  is  given  in  the  extended 
and  illustrated  pamphlet  or  prospectus,  sent  on 
application.  French  and  German  are  verj'  thor- 
oughly taught.  Terms  per  annum,  includmg 
music,  8400;  without  music,  $310. 

IMIT.    ST. 




Conducted  by  an  association  of  Secular  clergymen,  under  the  auspices  of  His  Grace 
the  Ardibishop  of  Baltimore. 

This  well-known  institution  combines  under  one  government  a  Junior  Department, 
a  Preparatory  and  Commercial  School,  a  College  empowered  to  confer  degrees,  and  a 
Theological  Seminary.  Situated  on  elevated  ground,  at  the  foot  of  the  Maryland  Blue 
Kidge,  far  removed  from  all  malarial  influences  and  the  distractions  of  cities,  it  is  re- 
nowned for  the  health,  happiness,  and  studious  habits  of  its  pupils.  The  College  build- 
ings, substantially  constructed,  have  recently  been  thoroughly  renovated,  lighted  with 
gas,  and  otherwise  improved. 

The  scholastic  year  is  divided  into  two  sessions,  beginning  respectively  Sept.  1st  and 
Feb.  1st.     New  students  will  be  admitted  at  any  time. 

Board  and  Tuition,  per  session  of  five  months,  to  be  paid  in  advance— Junior  Department $125  00 

Do.  do.  In  the  Preparatory  and  Commercial  Schools,  135  00 

Do.  do.  In  the  College 150  00 

Medical  attendHnce,  per  session 5  00 

In  tJie  I^cclesiasticMl  .Seminary,  per  session 100  00 

There  is  no  extra  charge  lor  French  or  German.     For  Catalogues  and  turther  intorniation,  address, 
Rev.  P.  ALLEN,  A.M.,  President,  Mt.  St.  Mary's  College,  Emmitsburff  M.^. 


FOUNDED    1789. 

For  iiiiormation  address  as  follows  : 
Georgetown  College,  D.  C, 

Rev.  James  A.  Doonau,  S.  J.,  Pres't. 
School  of  Medicine, 

Dr.  J.  W.  H,  l.ovejov, 


Washington,  D.  C. 
School  of  Law, 

Sam'I  M.  Yeatman,  Esq., 

Washington,  D.  C. 


This  College  enjoys  the  powers  of  a  University 
and  is  conducted  by  the  Jesuit  Fathers.  It  is  sit- 
uated in  a  very  beautiful  part  of  New  York  County 
between  the  Harlem  R.  and  L.  I.  Sound.  Every 
facility  is  given  for  the  best  Classical,  Scientific 
and  Commercial  Education.  Board  and  Tuition 
per  year  $300. 

St.  John's  Hall,  a  Preparatory  School  for 
Boys  from  10  to  12,  is  under  the  same  direction. 
For  further  particulars  apply  to  Rev.  John 
Scully,  S.  J.,  Pres. 


flFti  Esfeablisl^KaePife, 

I6O    Saratoga    Aveniae, 

mmm  statues  a  specialty. 

The  only  place  where  Statues  for  churches  and  chap- 
els of  all  descriptions  are  made  in  this  country,  equal  in 
beauty  of  model,  decoration  and  durability  of  material  for 
at  least  30  per  cent,  cheaper  than  anywhere  else. 

Usual  sizes  from  one  to  six  feet. 

Colors  warranted  to  wash. 

Statues  made  also  for  outdoor  at  same  prices  as  the 
indoor  would  cost. 

Models  are  made  after  the  finest  imported  French 
anil  German  originals. 

Relief  Stations,  2  feet  6  inches  by  5  feet,  Gothic 
frames,  richly  decorated,  at  the  extremely  low  price  of 
$350  per  set. 

Illustrated  Catalogue  sent  Free  on  application. 

I  will  also  send  a  Photographic  Album  of  my  Stat- 
uary, etc.,  if  called  for,  and  if  postage  is  paid  each  way, 
as  it  must  be  returned. 

150  Saratoga  Avenue,  Brooklyn,  N.  Y, 

Aleppo,        Oallia, 
Atlas,  Kedar, 

Aurauia,      Malta. 
Bothnia,      Marathou, 
Catalonia,    Morocco, 

ESTABLISHED,    184,0. 


From  New  York,  and  Boston,  every  Saturday. 
Two  sailings  every  week 

Oregon.        Servia, 
Palmyra.      Sidon. 
Pavonia.       Tarifa, 
Hamaria,      Trinidad. 

NflTIPF  ~^^^^  *^^  ^^^^  ^^  diminishing  the  chances  of  Collision,  the 
liU  I  lUt-  Steamers  of  this  Line  take  a  specified  course  for  all  seasons  of 
the  year. 

Hates  of  Passage,  S60,S80and$IOO.  According  to  Accommodation. 

Return  Tickets  on  favorable  terms.     Steerage  Passengers  Booked  to  all  parts  of  Europe  at  very  low  rates. 

Through  Bills  of  Lading  given  for  Belfast,  Glasgow,  Havre,  Antwerp,  and  other 
ports  on  the  Continent,  and  for  Mediterranean  ports.  For  Freight  and  Passage,  apply 
at  the  Company's  Office,  4  Bowling  Green. 

VERNON  H.  BROWN  &  CO.,  4  Bowling  Green,  N.  Y. 

Or  to  JAMES  HOGAN,  339  Chestnut  Street,  Khiladelphia. 



Devoted  to  the  Defence  of  Catholic  Principles  and  the  Propagation  of  Sonnd  Catholic  Thought. 

I^,„.,. , .,„..,„.„.„ 

^^Kally  readable  Catholic  newspapers  in  the  United  States.  Its  columns  are  filled  every 
^^mireek  with  a  great  amount  of  varied  and  instructive  reading  matter  on  religious,  literary, 
^^Band  other  subjects. 

^^ft  Its  Editorials  are  able,  fresh,  and  vigorous  on  all  questions  of  the  times  pertaining 
^^^o  the  interest  of  the  Church,  and  involving  the  rights  of  Catholic  citizens. 

It  has  regular  correspondence  from  Rome,  and  gives  the  fullest  news  from  all 
points  in  Ireland. 

It  furnishes  the  latest  reliable  Catholic  news  from  all  parts  of  the  world,  special 
attention  being  given  to  the  reproduction  of  discourses  by  distinguished  Catholic 
preachers  and  orators  both  in  America  and  in  Europe. 

In  its  Literary  Department  will  be  found  a  great  variety  of  entertaining  matter, 
comprising  Serial  Stories,  Sketches  of  Foreign  and  American  Life,  short  Tales,  Poems, 
interesting  reading  for  the  Young  Folks,  etc.,  etc. 

SO  Per  Annum,  Payable  in  Advance. 
Address  HARDY  &  MAHONY, 

Publishers  and  Proprietors, 
505  Chestnut  Street,  Philadelphia,  Pa. 


OF    THE 

American  Catholic  Historical  Society 


Price, ,     .     $2.00. 


Preface  (by  the  Editor) Page     5 

Introduction  (by  the  Recording  Secretary) 7 

Papers  Read  at  Public  Meetings  : 

Sketch  of  the  Abenaquis  Mission  (Rev.   James  J.  Brie,  S.  J.) 
The  Early  Registers  of  the  Catholic   Church  in   Pennsylvania 

(Philip  S.  P.  Conner) 22 

Rev.  Louis  Barth  (Rev.  Jules  C.  Foin  ) ?6 

The    Centenary  of   the  Adoption  of   the   Constitution   of   the 

United  States  (Rev.  Dr.  Horstmann's  Address) 38 

Our  Nation's  Glory  (Poem  by  Miss  Eleanor  C.  Donnelly) 42 

Thomas  FitzSimons,    Pennsylvania's    Catholic    Signer  of   the 

Constitution  (Martin   I.   J.   Grififin) 45 

Catholic  Choirs  and    Choir  Music    in    Philadelphia  (Michael 

H.  Cross) 115 

Catholicity  in  South-Eastern   (Lee  County)   Iowa  (Rev.   John 

F.  Kempker) 128 

Sketches  of  Catholicity  in  Texas  (Very  Rev.  C.  Jaillet,  V.G.)         143 

Father  Louis  della  Vagna  (H.   F.  Mcintosh) 154 

The  Origin  of  the  Flathead   Mission  (Major  Edmond   Mallet, 

LL.  B) ' 164 

History  of  the  Church  of  Our   Lady  of  Perpetual  Succor,  Bos- 
ton (Rev.  Charles  W.  Currier,  C.  SS.  R) 206 

List  of  Baptisms  of  St.  Joseph's  Church,  Philadelphia,  1 776-1 781...         225 

Father  Farmer's  Marriage  Register,  1 758-1 786 276 

Father  Schneider's  Goshenhoppen  Registers,  1741-1764 316 

Department  of  Genealogies  : 

The  Esling  Genealogy 333 

The  Sehner  Family 3^7 

Kelly-Hendry  Families 3^^ 


The  Library  and  its  Benefactors  (F.  X.  Reuss) 374 

Rules  for  the  Government  of  the  Library 381 

Public  Meetings 383 

Alphabetical  List  of  Members  of  the  Society .- 3^^ 

Obituary 3^9 

Aphabetical  Index 39 ^ 

Send  orders  to 



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$5.00  per  Annum,  in  Advance. 

Issued  in  January,  April,  July,  and  October.     Each  number  contains  192 
large  octavo  pages,  printed  from  legible  type,  on  fine  white  paper. 

The  REVIEW  is  the  only  Catholic  Quarterly  published  in  the  United 
States,  and  is  the  leading  literary  exponent  of  Catholic  thought  in  America. 
It  employs  the  highest  order  of  literary  talent  available  in  this  country  and 
in  Europe,  and  treats  of  all  questions  of  interest  to  educated  Catholics, 
both  clerical  and  lay. 

The  INTELLIGENT  APPRECIATION  of  the  merits  of  the  REVIEW, 
heretofore,  by  the  Catholic  public,  and  more  especially  by  the  Reverend 
Clergy,  justifies  the  expectation  that  an  increased  measure  of  support  will  be 
accorded  to  it  during  the  present  year. 

T/ie  Review  stands  at  the  head  of  Roman  Catholic ptiblications  in  this  cotintry.'''' — Alta 

"  The  beauty  of  the  typog7'aphy  has  never  been  excelled  on  this  continent.'' — Montreal  Sun. 

Does  not  infringe  upon  any  field  now  occupied  by  any  Catholic  magazine.     It  simply 

rises  above  all,  and  proposes  to  discuss  the  nost  recondite  branches-^theological,  polemical, 

scientific,  literary  and  political— that  they  consider  more  or  less  adequately  and  in  their 

relations  rather  than  in  their  elements^— 'North  American. 

"It  is  a  matter  of  honor  to  American  Catholics  that  they  uphold,  by  generous  support,  a 
i  Review  which  represeizts  the  finest  intellectual  and  theological  culture  of  the  country.''' — 
I    Boston  Pilot. 

\'  *'As  p}-esenting  the  vieios  of  cultivated  American  Roman  Catholics  on  the  great  religious 
\  and  intellectual  questions  of  the  day,  it  merits  the  attention  not  only  of  their  brethren  in 
■  faith,  but  of  Protestants  also  who  desire  to  give  a  candid  consideration  to  their  opponents' 
'   arguments  in  support  of  their  doctrines." — New  York  Sun. 

;  ''We  disagree  with  our  opponents ;  but  we  cannot  afford  to  be  ignorant  of  ivhat  their 
\\  best  men  are  saying  and  doing  "—New  York  Independent. 

-By  all  odds  the  ablest,  most  scholarly  and  most  attractive  Roman   Catholic  Revient  yet 
-ued  in  the  country." — Presbyterian  Banner. 

Subscriptions  Respectfully  Solicited. 


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Box  t044. 


Publishers  and  Proprietors, 




1  HE  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review  is  issued  regularly  iii  Ji 
nary,  April,  July,  and  October. 

-Each  Number  contains  192  pages,  large  octavo,  printed  from  legible 
on  fine  white  paper. 

bscription,  $5-oo  per  annum,  payable  in  advance,  or  ;^i.25  a  single 
jcstage  free  to  all  parts  of  the  U.  S. 

The  Editorial  Department  is  conducted  by  Rt.  Rev.  James  A.  Corcoran,  D.l 

It  is  designed  that  the  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review  shall  be  of  tb 
highest  character  that  can  be  given  it  by  the  educated  Catholic  mind  of  ti  < 
United  States  and  of  Europe. 

It  is  -NOT  proposed  that  it  shall  be  confined  to  the  discussion  of  theological  « 
subjects,  but  that  it  shall  embrace  within  its  scope  all  subjects  of  interest  to  edu-  1 
cated  Catholics,  whether  philosophical,  historical,  scientific,  literary,  or  politic. 

using  the  latter  term  in  its  original  and  proper  meaning,     l^artisan  politics,  c. 

politics  in  the  popular  sense  of  the  word,  it  is  scarcely  necessary  to  say,  will 
rigidly  excluded. 

The  most  learned  and  scholarly  writers  that  can  be  secured  will  oe  tiiiisted 
m  support  of  the  Review  as  regular  and  occasional  contributors;  and  every  effort 
will  be' made  by  its  conductors  to  render  it  an  able  and  efficient  auxiliary  to  the 
Church  in  her  warfare  against  modern  error. 

Subscriptions  respectfully  solicited. 

Address.  HARDY  ^  MAHONT, 


Post-Office  Box,   1044  PHILADELPHIA 


Die  3  Januarii,  A.D.   1884. 



\  J  '  t:  ti :  i  ill  IU7J .  ! 

January  3,  A.I»    1884.' 
We  have  received  wriii  gratitude  through  the  Archbishop  of  Baltimore th| 

VOU    MAY    CARRY    ON    YOUR    WORK    WITH    GREATER    ALACRITY    We     LOVINGLY     IN    THE    LO?! 

TOLic  Benediction  upon  you  all. 

LKC'    !  I     XIII. 


APRIL.  1889.  ^°'^*' 



ATHOLic  Quarterly 


Bonum  est  homini  ut  eum  Veritas  vincat  volentem,  quia  malum  est  homini  ut  eum  Veritas  vincat 

invitum.    Nam  ipsa  vincat  necesse  est,  sive  negantem  sive  confitentem. 

S.  Aug.  Epist.  ccxxxviii.  ad  Pascent. 



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Bcimore:  John  Murphy  &  Co.— Cincinnati  and  Chicago:  Benziger   Bros.,    F.  Pustet— ^Z.  Louis  : 
Fox,    B.    Herder^ — San    Francisco:  A.  Waldteufel — New    Orleans:  Charles   D.  Elder — 
^niwaukee  :  Hoffmann  BRoi.— Montreal :  D.  &  J.  Sadlier  &  Co.St.yokn,  N.  B. :  T.  O'Brien 
y   ,       %i  ro_^London :  Burns  &  Oat-es— Dublin  :  W.  H.  Smith  &  Son,  M.  H.  Gill  &  Son. 



'ilntered  according:  to  Act  of  Congress,  in  the  year  1879,  by  HARDr  &  Mahont,  in  the  Office  oJ  tbp 
Librarian  of  Congress,  at  Wa-hington,  D.  C. 


Catholic  Standard, 


Devoted  to  the  Defence  of  Catholic  Principles 

And  the  Propagation  of  Sound  Catholic  Thought. 


The  Catholic  Standakd  is  one  of  the  largest,  most  ably  conducted, 
and  generally  readable  Catholic  family  newspapers  in  the  United  States. 
Its  columns  are  filled  every  week  with  a  great  amount  of  varied  and  in- 
structive reading  matter  on  religious,  literary,  and  other  subjects 
general  interest  suited  to  the  home  circle. 

Its  Editorials  are  able,  fresh,  and  vigorous  on  all  questions  of  the  tim^ 
pertaining  to  the  interest  of  the  church,  and    involving  the  rights 
Catholic  citizens. 

It  has  a  regular  weekly  correspondent  stationed  at  Rome,  and  gives  tl 
fullest  new^s  from  all  points  in  Ireland. 

It  furnishes  the  latest  reliable  Catholic  news  from  all  parts  of  tl 
world,  special  attention  being  given  to  the  reproduction  of  discourses 
distinguished  Catholic  preachers  and  orators  both  in  America  and 

In  its  Literary  Department  will  be  found  a  great  variety  of  entertaia^ 
ing  matter,  comprising  Serial  Stories,  Sketches  of  Foreign  and  American 
Life,  short  Tales,  Poems,  interesting  reading  for  the  Young  Folks,  etc.,  etc. 

T  E3  K.  HVvdl  S  : 

S2.50  Per  Annum,  Payable  in  Advance. 

Address  HARDY  &  MAHONY, 

Pnblisliers  and  Proprietors, 
505  Chestnut  Street,  Philadelphia,  Pa. 


St.  Mary's  College, 

Marion  County,  Kentucky,  possesses  the  advan- 
tages of  a  most  healthful  country  locality,  free 
from  all  distractions;  enforces  diligence  and 
discipline  strictly,  and  is  able  to  give  boys  excel- 
lent instruction  and  unusually  good  board  and 
treatment  at  very  reasonable  rates.  For  cata- 
logue write  to 

Rev.  David  Fennessy,  C.R., 

St.  Mary's,  Ky. 

Mt.  St.  Joseph  Academy, 

Chestnut  Hill,  Phila.  Conducted  by  the  Sisters 
of  St.  Joseph.  ThivS  Institution  offers  exceptional 
facilities  for  the  acquisition  of  a  thorough  Eng- 
lish education. 

Special  students  in  Music  will  find  the  Course 
and  Methods  pursued  very  conducive  to  rapid 
advancement.  Full  particulars  in  catalogue,  for 

which  applv  to 

Mother  Superior. 

St.  Mary's  Academy. 

The  Thirty-third  Academic  Year  will  open  on 
the  first  Monday  in  September,  1888.  School  of 
Art  and  Design.  Conservatory  of  Music  on  the 
plan  of  best  conservatories  of  Europe.  Acade- 
mic course  is  thorough  in  the  Preparatory,  Senior 
and  Classical  grades.  Drawing  and  Painting 
from  Life  and  the  Antique,  Phonography  and 
Type-Writing  taught.    Apply  for  catalogue  to 

Mother  Superior, 

St.  Mary's  Academy,  Notre  Dame,  St.  Joseph  Co., 


Preparatory  School  for  Boys 

Fayetteville,  Brown  County,  Ohio. 

For  boys  between  the  ages  of  3  and  12.  Con- 
ducted by  the  Sisters  of  Charity.  Reopens  first 
week  in  September.    Terms  very  liberal. 

For  particulars  and  terms  apply  to  Cedar 
Grove  Academy,  Price  Hill,  Cincinnati,  Ohio; 
Sisters  of  Charity,  Fayetteville,  Brown  Co., 
Ohio,  or  any  of  the  Catholic  Clergy  of  the  city. 

Sisters  of  the  Visitation. 

Academy  of  the  Visitation,  Mount  de  Sales, 
Catonsville,  Md. 

This  Institution  offers  every  advantage  to 
young  ladies  wishing  to  receive  a  solid  and 
refined  education.    Terms  moderate. 

Mt.  de  Chantal, 

A  school  for  young  ladies,  near  Wheeling,  W.  Va. 
Full  English,  Mathematical  and  Classical  course. 
A  fine  Library  is  at  the  command  of  the  stu- 
dents. Modern  Languages,  Drawing  and  Paint- 
ing. Complete  graded  course  in  Vocal  and 
Instrumental  Music.  Location  unsurpassed  for 
beauty  and  health.  Ten  acres  of  pleasure 
grounds.    Board  excellent.    Apply  to 

The  Directress. 

St,  Joseph's  Seminary 

For  Colored  Missions.  There  are  in  the  Southern 
States  over  6,000,000  Negroes. of  whom  not  100,000 
are  Catholics.  The  various  Protestant  sects 
claim  but  3,000,000,  thus  leaving  over  3.000,000 
who  belong  to  no  church.  A  double  duty,  as 
Catholics  and  Americans,  lies  upon  us.  St. 
Joseph's  Seminary  will  help  in  part  to  fulfil 
these  duties.  It  needs  subjects,  who  will  devote 
themselves  to  this  Apostolic  work.  It  is  entirely 
dependent  on  alms.    Address 

Rev.  John  R.  Slattery,  Rector, 

St.  Joseph's  Seminary,  Baltimore,  Md. 

St.  Mary's  Academic  Instl- 

tute  (diocese  of  vincennes),  St  Mary's  of  the 
Woods,  Vigo  County,  Ind.  The  pupils  of  this 
spacious  and  elegantly  finished  and  furnished 
Institute  enjoy,  at  very  low  rates,  every  advant- 
age conducive  to  pleasure  and  health,  together 
with  imrivaUed facilities  Jor  acquinng  thorough  and 
accomplished  education.  The  scholastic  year 
begins  September  1st.  For  terms  and  other  par- 
ticulars, address 

Sister  Superior, 

St.  Mary's,  Vigo  Co.,  Indiana. 

Georgetown  Academy  of  the 

Visitation  of  the  Blessed  Virgin.  Delight- 
fully situated  on  Georgetown  Heights,  near  the 
National  Capital.    Founded  1799.    Address, 

Sisters  of  the  Visitation, 
Georgetown  Academy,  West  Washington,  D.  C. 

Academy  Mt.  St.  Vlncent- 

on-the-Hudson,  New  York  City.  The  InstituUon 
covers  sixty-three  acres;  a  large  portion  of  the 
grounds  is  thrown  open  to  the  pupils. 

The  course  of  study  is  gfven  in  the  extended 
and  illustrated  pamphlet  or  prospectus,  sent  on 
application.  French  and  German  are  very  thor- 
oughly taught.  Terms  per  annum,  including 
music,  $400;  without  music,  $310. 

Is^T.    ST.    IMIj^ie/ir'S    OOLLEO-E, 


Conducted  by  an  association  of  Secular  clergymen,  under  the  auspices  of  His  Grace 
the  Archbishop  of  Baltimore. 

This  well-known  institution  combines  under  one  government  a  Junior  Department, 
a  Preparatory  and  Commercial  School,  a  College  empowered  to  confer  degrees,  and  a 
Theological  Seminary.  Situated  on  elevated  ground,  at  the  foot  of  the  Maryland  Blue 
Ridge,  far  removed  from  all  malarial  influences  and  the  distractions  of  cities,  it  is  re- 
nowned for  the  health,  happiness,  and  studious  habits  of  its  pupils.  The  College  build- 
ings, substantially  constructed,  have  recently  been  thoroughly  renovated,  lighted  with 
gas,  and  otherwise  improved. 

The  scholastic  year  is  divided  into  two  sessions,  beginning  respectively  Sept.  1st  and 
Feb.  Ist.    New  students  will  be  admitted  at  any  time. 


Board  and  Tuition,  per  session  of  five  montbs,  to  be  paid  in  advance — Junior  Department |125  00 

~  do.  In  "     "  '  "  ..-..-- 

.    do. 

J  per  session 

In  the  Ecclesiastical  Seminary,  per  session  , 

the  Preparatory  and  Commercial  Schools,  135 
'     "  llei 

Do.  do. 

Do,  .    do.  IntheColIege ' .150  00 

Medical^  attendance,  per  session 5  00 

100  00 
There  is  no  extra  charge  for  French  or  German.    For  Catalogues  and  further  information,  address, 

Bev.  P.  ALLEN,  A.M.,  President,  Mt.  St.  Mary's  College,  Emraitsburg.  Md. 


FOUNDED    1789. 

For  information  address  as  follows : 
Georgetown  College,  D.  C, 

Rev.  James  A,  Doonan,  S.  J.,  Pres't. 
School  of  Medicine, 

Dr.  J.  W.  H,  l.ovejov, 

900  12thSt.,N.W., 

Washington,  D.  C. 
School  of  Law, 

Sam'l  M.  Yeatman,  Esq., 

Washington,  D.  C. 

ST.  JOHN'S  COLLEGE.  ^lS,°y"oTK. 

This  College  enjoys  the  powers  of  a  University 
and  is  conducted  by  the  Jesuit  Fathers.  It  is  sit- 
uated in  a  very  beautiful  part  of  New  York  County 
between  the  Harlem  R.  and  L.  I.  Sound.  Every 
facility  is  given  for  the  best  Classical,  Scientific 
and  Commercial  Education.  Board  and  Tuition 
per  year  $300. 

St.  John's  Hall,  a  Preparatory  School  for 
Boys  from  10  to  12,  is  under  the  same  direction. 
For  further  particulars  apply  to  Rev.  John 
Scully,  S.J.,  Pres. 


flpfe  Bslablisl^ffieMfe, 

ISO    Saratoga.    Aveniae, 


The  only  place  where  Statues  for  churches  and  chap- 
els of  all  descriptions  are  made  in  this  country,  equal  in 
beauty  of  model,  decoration  and  durability  of  material  for 
at  least  30  per  cent,  cheaper  than  anywhere  else. 

Usual  sizes  from  one  to  six  feet.     • 

Colors  warranted  to  wash. 

Statues  made  also  for  outdoor  at  saine  prices  as  the 
indoor  would  cost. 

Models  are  made  after  tlie  finest  imported  French 
and  German  originals. 

Relief  Stations,  2  feet  6  inches  by  5  feet,  Gothic 
frames,  richly  decorated,  at  the  extremely  low  price  of 
$350  per  set. 

Illustrated  Catalogue  sent  Free  on  application. 

I  will  also  send  a  Photographic  Album  of  my  Stat- 
uary, etc.,  if  called  for,  and  if  postage  is  paid  each  way, 
as  it  must  be  returned. 

150  Saratoga  Avenue,  Brooklyn,  N.  Y. 

We  have  on  hand  a  limited  number  of  full 
sets  of  the  ''American  Catholic  Quarterly 
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^05  Chestnut  St.,  Phila. 




Prof.  Charles  G.  Herbermann,  Ph.D.,  193 


Arthur  F.  Marshall,  B.A.  (Oxon.),  216 


J.  I.  Rodriguez,  229 


Peter  L.  Foy,  243 


Mgr.  J.  de  Concilio,  D.D.,  268 


Mgr.  Bernard  O'Reilly,  D.D.,        '  283 


John  McCarthy,  303 


John  Gilmary  Shea,  LL.D.,  322 


Rev.  W.  Poland,  S.J.,  334 


Prof.  St.  George  Mivart,  F.R.S.,       *  342 


Rev.  William  A.  Fletcher,  358 


Rev.  D.  T.  O'Sullivan,  S.J.,  364 


Narrative  and  Critical  History  of  America — Manuals  of  Catholic  Philosophy — Frederick: 
Crown  Prince  and  Emperor — Ancient  Rome  in  the  Light  of  Recent  Discoveries — The 
Wandering  Knight— The  New  Sunday  School  Companion — Rudiments  of  Hebrew  Gram- 
mar— Short  Instructive  Sketches  from  the  Lives  of  the  Saints  for  the  Use  of  Parochial  and 
Sunday  Schools,  Academies,  etc. —  Leaves  from  St.  John  Chrysostom — Short  Instructions 
for  Low  Masses — Liturgy  for  the  Laity — The  History  of  Confession— St.  Patrick,  the 
Father  of  a  Sacred  Nation— Records  of  the  English  Catholics  of  17 15 — The  Life  arid 
Glories  of  St.  Joseph,  Husband  of  Mary,  Foster  P^ather  of  Jesus,  and  Patron  of  the  Universal 
Church— The  Life  and  Writings  of  the  Right  Rev.  John  McMullen,  D.D.,  First  Bishop  of 
Davenport,  Iowa — The  Little  Book  of  Sujjcriors— Characteristics  from  the  Writings  of 
Archbishop  Ullathorne — Letters  to  Persons  in  Religion— Memoir  of  the  Life  of  the 
Rev.  Francis  A.  Baker. 



VOL.  XIV.— APRIL,  1889.— No.  54. 


TTOW  much  light  modern  research  has  thrown  on  the  Middle 
Ages  is  known  to  all  students  of  history.  They  also  know 
how  strong  has  been  the  testimony  borne  by  modern  scholarship  to 
the  beneficent  activity  of  the  Popes  and  the  Church  in  those  often 
misjudged  times.  In  the  October  number  of  the  Review  we  have 
given  some  of  the  most  striking  results  of  modern  investigation 
on  this  period.  The  aim  of  the  article  referred  to,  however,  was 
not  only  to  throw  light  on  the  "  Dark  "  Ages ;  it  was  broader  and 
more  comprehensive.  Our  aim  was  to  prove  to  our  readers,  by  an 
appeal  to  the  facts,  that  the  Church  has  nothing  to  fear,  but  much 
to  hope,  from  historical  science.  Lest,  however,  the  premises  ap- 
pear too  narrow  for  this  conclusion,  we  shall  extend  our  researches, 
and  study  another  great  historical  question,  the  question  of  the 
**  Reformation." 

Of  course,  we  shall  not  enter  into  an  examination  of  Luther's 
doctrines,  of  their  truth  or  consistency.  This  is  foreign  to  our 
purpose,  and  besides  it  is  useless  to  slay  the  dead;  Luther's  most 
cardinal  doctrine,  that  of  justification  by  faith  alone,  was  buried  by 
his  own  disciples  centuries  ago,  and  not  a  few  of  his  other  doc- 
trines have  followed  that  to  the  grave.  To-day  the  world  is  little 
interested  in  Luther  the  constructive  theologian ;  but  the  history 
of  Luther's  movements  has  by  no  means  lost  its  interest.  No 
book,  of  late,  has  so  exasperated  and  dismayed  the  German  sup- 
porters of  the  "  Reformation  "  as  Janssen's  "  History  of  the  German 
VOL.  XIV. — 13 

194  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

People."  Still  Janssen  never  enters  into  theological  discussions, 
never  attempts  to  analyze  or  refute  Luther's  teachings.  Whence, 
therefore,  the  dismay  of  the  "  Reformer's  "  friends  ?  Because  Janssen 
mildly  and  mercilessly  demolishes  the  traditional  Luther;  because 
historical  truth  compelled  him  to  draw  attention  to  some  very  in- 
convenient features  in  Luther's  career.  In  the  nineteenth  century, 
in  the  days  of  the  Rothschilds  and  the  Bleichroders,  it  is  incon- 
venient for  his  followers  to  be  regaled  with  an  authentic  picture  of 
the  "Reformer's"  brutal  intolerance,  not  only  of  Catholics — that 
would  not  have  stung  the  men  of  the  Cultur-KaMpf—huio{]Qws  ; 
in  the  days  of  the  new  German  empire  it  is  inconvenient  to  be 
reminded  of  the  "  Reformer's"  repeated  faithlessness  to  the  old  Ger- 
man empire ;  in  the  days  of  Deroulede  and  the  French  Patriotic 
League  it  is  inconvenient  to  read  of  the  "Reformer's"  approval  of 
the  coquetting,  nay,  the  alliance  of  his  friends  with  Germany's 
arch-enemy.  The  "  Reformation  "  meant  tolerance,  we  have  heard 
re-echoed  in  every  key,  major  and  minor.  But  the  arch-"  reformer's" 
own  words  prove  him  a  brutal  denouncer  of  Catholic,  Calvinist, 
and  Jew.  Luther  was  the  great  German  patriot,  sang  his  admirers 
in  loud  chorus.  Alas !  that  men's  writing  will  live  after  them  ; 
for  Luther  had  written  himself  down — well,  we  shall  not  use  harsh 
words — a  friend  of  Germany's  hereditary  foe.  Strange,  indeed,  and 
unlikely  does  it  appear  that  error  and  falsehood  should  entwine 
themselves  around  so  public,  so  stupendous  a  series  of  events  as 
that  comprised  in  the  word  "  Reformation."  But  history  cannot  be 
based  on  assumptions,  and  the  new  historical  school  takes  nothing 
for  granted.  Already  it  has  overhauled  a  great  part  of  what  passed 
.for  the  history  of  the  "  Reformation."  It  has  re-examined  old  wit- 
nesses, and  brought  new  witnesses  on  the  stand.  It  has  put  aside 
second-hand  authorities,  and  gone  to  the  sources.  And  though  it 
is  hard  for  human  nature  to  lay  aside  long-cherished  opinions,  even 
non-Catholic  followers  of  the  new  school  have  not  wilfully  closed 
their  eyes  to  the  light,  nor  sealed  their  lips,  when  truth  brushed 
away  the  inherited  error  of  ages.  We  shall  review  a  few  of  their 

"At  one  time,"  says  Prof.  K.  Pearson,  "not  only  the 
Protestants  believed^  but  leading  Protestant  historians  stated  as  a 
fact,  that  Luther  had  translated  the  Bible  for  the  first  time.  Then 
when  the  existence  of  eighteen  previous  editions  (printed  German 
translations  are  meant)  could  no  longer  be  disguised,  it  was  broadly 
hinted  that  they  never  reached  the  people,  that  they  were  based 
only  on  the  Vulgate,  that  the  language  is  awkward,  heavy,  and 
neither  precise  in  sense  nor  happy  in  expression.^    So  Goedeke. 

»  Prof.  Pearson  here  gives  the  German  text :  "  Die  Sprache  ist  unbeholfen  schwer- 
f  allig  und  weder  genau  im  Sinn  noch  treffend  im  Ausdruck." 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  '' Reformation ^  195 

This  was  met  by  the  proof  that  their  language  was  a  perfect  mine 
of  folk-expression,  homely  and  true ;  nay,  further,  it  was  shown 
that  Luther,  so  far  from  translating  from  the  original  Greek,  had  in 
the  New  Testament,  to  a  great  extent,  only  modernized  the  old 
German  Vulgate.  The  September  Bible  was  only  a  natural  growth 
out  of  the  version  of  the  Codex  Teplensis  of  the  fourteenth  century."* 
"  Where  Luther  does  differ  from  the  (pre-'  Reformation')  German 
Vulgate  is  very  often  in  those  passages  in  which  his  own  strong 
sense  of  the  righteousness  of  his  own  dogma  has  led  him  to  per- 
vert the  text.  Against  Emser's  2400  '  heretical  errors,  lies,  and 
wrong  tense-renderings,'  I  may  cite  Bunsen's  3000  inaccuracies. 
.  .  .  Mr.  Hutchinson  tells  us  that  Luther  probably  began  Greek  in 
15 12.  We  happen  to  know  that  he  began  it  in  August,  15 18.  Let 
me  cite  what  was  written  two  years  ago,  and  remind  the  reader 
that  to  revise,  not  translate,  cost  our  thorough  Greek  scholars  ten 
years'  work,  1870-1880.  On  the  25th  of  August,  1518,  Melanch- 
thon  arrived  in  Wittenberg  ;  then,  for  the  first  time,  Luther,  attend- 
ing the  lectures  of  Melanchthon,  began  to  study  Greek.  This  is 
shown  not  only  by  Luther's  letters,  but  Melanchthon  in  a  speech 
to  the  students,  recommending  the  study  of  Greek,  points  out  to 
them  Luther's  example  in  Luther  himself,  who,  already  advanced 
in  years  {qnamvis  jam  senex)^  has  learned  the  Greek  tongue.  In 
June,  15  19,  we  have  the  famous  Leipzig  disputation  with  Eck,  and 
in  April,  1521,  Luther  arrives  in  Worms;  he  is  in  bitter  and  pro- 
longed controversy  with  Eck  and  Emser,  he  is  writing  book  after 
book  against  the  Pope  and  his  bull,  and  he  is  contesting  the 
condemnation  of  the  leading  universities  of  Christendom.  In 
1 5  20  alone  he  publishes  three  epoch-making  works,  and  yet  he  must 
find  time  to  study  Greek.  On  December  21st,  1521,  Luther  wrote 
to  Langeof  his  determination  to  translate  the  New  Testament,  and 
within  a  less  period  than  three  months  the  work  is  completed. 
Returning  on  March  ist  from  the  Wartburg  to  Wittenberg,  he 
managed  to  review  the  translation  with  Melanchthon  notwith- 
standing the  Carlstadt  difficulties,  and  on  the  21st  of  September 
the  New  Testament  is  issued  completed  from  the  press.  To  trans- 
late, revise,  and  print  occupied  less  than  nine  months,  and  this 
notwithstanding  Luther's  three  most  broken  years  of  Greek  study. 
Does  not  such  external  evidence  fully  confirm  internal  coinci- 
dences and  point  to  Luther's  dependence  on  his  predecessors  ? '" 

"  Luther,"  says  Paulsen,  "  appreciated  the  old  (classical)  writers, 
especially  the  Roman,  which  were  almost  the  only  classics  he 
knew.'"     ''  The  Greek  authors,"  says  O.  Schmidt,  in  a  pamphlet 

1  K.  Pearson  in  Academy  of  September  26th,  1885. 

2  K.  Pearson  in  Academy  of  October  loth,  1885,  pp.  240-1. 
'  Paulsen,  /.  c,  p.  147. 

196  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

on  "  Luther's  acquaintance  with  the  Classics,"  ''  were  little  known 

to  him.'" 

The  fact  that  in  Germany  at  least  fourteen  high-German  and 
four  low-German  translations  of  the  Bible  had  been  printed  before 
the  "  Reformation  "  could  no  longer  be  denied.  It  was  a  bitter  dose 
for  the  old-fashioned  worshippers  of  Luther.  Must  they  concede 
that  their  prophet  was  wrong  ?  that  he  had  slandered  the  Catholic 
Church  ?  that  the  Church  had  not  withheld  from  her  children  the 
saving  nourishment  of  the  Bible?  It  was  too  much  to  expect 
such  an  admission  at  once.  They  set  their  wits  to  work,  and  lo  ! 
they  thought  they  had  found  a  way  to  escape  the  disagreeable 
inference.  The  eighteen  editions  were  printed — that  could  not  be 
denied  ;  the  books  were  in  evidence.  But  were  they  printed  by 
Catholics  and  for  Catholics  ?  Was  the  translation  a  Catholic 
translation  ?  For  whom,  suggested  common  sense,  if  not  for 
Catholics  should  they  be  printed  ?  Was  not  Germany,  as  a  whole, 
Catholic  before  Luther  ?  The  censorship  of  books  existed  in  the 
electorate  of  Mainz  since  i486,  and  Archbishop  Berthold,  of 
Mainz,  bid  the  censors  withhold  their  approval  from  books  "  if 
perchance  they  cannot  be  correctly  translated,  if  they  rather  beget 
scandal  and  error,  or  offend  modesty."  Nevertheless,  twelve  out 
of  the  eighteen  German  Bible  translations  were  printed  in  the 
province  of  Mainz.  Were  the  censors  asleep  ?  or  how  could  four- 
teen editions  of  a  heretical  Bible  be  published  there,  and  for 
heretics,  too  ? 

Serious  difficulties  these.  Still  they  did  not  appal  the  zealous 
defenders  of  Luther.  In  1885  a  Protestant  clergyman,  Keller 
by  name,  published  a  work  on  "  The  Reformation  and  the  Older 
Reform  Parties."  He  had  made  a  discovery.  "  The  opinion  here- 
tofore prevailing,  that  the  German  Bible  translation  sprang  from 
orthodox  Roman  Catholic  sources,  is  wholly  false  ;  the  German 
people  owes  it  to  the  Bible-believing  heretics,  the  Waldensians." 
Protestant  critics,  even  such  as  otherwise  condemned  the  book 
without  mercy,  admitted  this  conclusion.  Keller's  arguments, 
however,  were  by  no  means  convincing.  So,  in  the  same  year.  Dr. 
H.  Haupt  published  a  new  work  to  correct  and  complete  the  reason- 
ing. But,  alas!  for  the  futility  of  human  endeavors!  Scarcely 
had  Haupt  placed  his  book  before  the  public  when  forthwith 
comes  forward  another  non- Catholic,  Dr.  Franz  Jostes,^  and  topples 
over  the  beautifully  constructed  house  of  cards.  Keller's  and 
Haupt's  arguments,  external  and  internal,  are  tested  and  found  to 

1  Quoted  by  Paulsen  on  the  same  page. 

2  Dr.  F.  Jostes,  Die  Waldenser  und  die  vorlutherische  deutsche  Bibeliibersetzung. 
Munster,  1885. 


Myths  and  Legends  of  the  ''  Reformation r  197 

be  based  on  imagination  and  ignorance.  "  The  writer  "  (Jostes), 
says  Prof.  Pearson,  "  subjects  the  Keller-Haupt  hypothesis  to  a 
fairly  searching  criticism,  which  will  do  much  to  assuage  that  sec- 
tarian  enthusiasm  which  has  swept  through  the  Protestant  press' 

of  Germany We  shall  note  with  some  curiosity  whether 

the  remarkable  interest,  recently  manifested  by  Lutheran  theolo- 
gians for  the  pre- Lutheran  Vulgate,  will  now  begin  to  subside." 

So  much  for  the  German  pre-Lutheran  Bible  translations.  But 
what  of  Haupt's  assertion  that  the  Church  had  forbidden  wholly  the 
use  of  Bible  translations  ?  It  is  true  that  in  certain  places  and  for 
good  reasons  certain  translations  were  forbidden  in  the  eleventh, 
twelfth,  and  thirteenth  centuries.  But  "  in  Spain  only  were  Spanish 
translations  generally  prohibited  by  royal  edict  since  the  end  of  the 
thirteenth  century."^  *'In  Germany,  the  only  prohibition  (which  was 
no  prohibition  at  all)  is  contained  in  a  decree  of  Berthold,  Arch- 
bishop of  Mainz,  establishmg  a  preventive  censorship."*  "By  the 
Council  of  Trent,  and  not  before,  the  use  of  German  Bibles  by  laymen 
was  greatly  restricted,  though  not  wholly  forbidden.  But  the  pro- 
scription was  by  many  not  regarded  as  binding.  The  Bavarian  cata- 
logue of  forbidden  books  for  1 566,  for  example,  mentions  among  the 
most  useful  books  for  laymen  the  Bibles  of  Eck  and  Dietenberger, 
the  New  Testament  of  Emser,  and  the  very  old  translation  of  the 

Bible  or  of  some  extracts  therefrom which,  however,  are 

not  often  printed  now.  As  late  as  161 2  the  Jesuit  Serarius  says  : 
"  If  anyone  in  Germany  reads  without  special  permission  the 
Bible  of  Eck  or  Dietenberger,  this  is  not  only  not  censured  or 
punished  by  bishops,  pastors,  and  confessors,  but  rather  approved 
and  praised,  as  if  a  general  permission  had  been  given."" 

How  bitterly  opposed  Catholic  priests  were  to  the  reading  of  the 
Bible  in  the  fifteenth  century  may  be  inferred  from  a  fact  recorded 
at  Leyden,  in  the  Netherlands,  at  that  time  a  part  of  the  German 
Emperor's  possessions.  "  There,  in  the  year  1462,  Willem  Heer- 
man,  a  respected  burgher,  presented  to  the  city  a  copy  of  the  com- 
plete German  Bible,  prepared  by  his  own  hand.  This  copy  was 
placed  in  St.  Peter's  Church  for  the  use  of  '  all  good  honest  men, 
who  wish  to  read  therein  and  study  something  good.'  During 
the  Middle  Ages  the  churches  were  always  open  throughout  the 
day."*  ''  Regarding  the  spread  of  our  old  Bible  translation,"  says 
W.  Moll,  Professor  of  Protestant  Theology  at  Amsterdam.  *'  we  can 
report  but    little.     As   far  as  the   lay  world  is  concerned  it  was 

1  Reusch,  Index  der  verbotenen  Blicher,  vol.  i.,  p.  43.  quoted  in  Josies,  Die  Wal- 
denser,  p.  21.     Reusch  is  an  Old  Catholic. 

=«  Jostes,  /.  ^ ,  p.  22.  3  jostes,  /.  c,  p.  231.  *  .Testes,  /.  c,  p.  2S1. 

ip8  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

probably  most  often  used  in  women's  convents,  in  Beguin  houses, 
and  in  assemblies  of  Sisters  of  the  Common  Life,  and  moreover  in 
men's  convents,  which,  besides  monks,  also  included  uneducated  lay 
brothers.  That  since  the  middle  of  the  fifteenth  century  it  existed  in 
many,  if  not  in  all,  convents,  either  complete  or  in  extracts,  is  likely 
in  view  of  the  copies  which  exist  in  our  public  and  private  libraries, 
which  are  numerous,  and  generally  bear  the  proofs  of  coming 
from  convents."^  The  history  of  the  French  Bible  during  the 
Middle  Ages  has  recently  been  traced  by  M.  Samuel  Berger  in 
his  work,  La  Bible  Frangaise  an  Moyen  Age.  He  found  a  French 
version  ofthe  books  of  Samuel  and  the  Kings  dating  back  as  early  as 
1 1 50  A.D.  In  the  thirteenth  century  the  whole  Bible  was  translated, 
some  books  being  accompanied  with  a  commentary.  "About  1300 
A.D.,  Desmoulins,  Canon  of  Aire  in  Anjou,  wrote  in  the  Picard  dia- 
lect his  '  Bible  Historiale^  made  up  of  the  text  of  the  Bible  with 
some  omissions  and  a  free  translation  of  the  Historia  Scholastica  of 

Petrus  Comestor The  first  volume  of  Desmoulins,  and  the 

second  volume  of  the  Century  Bible,  make  up  the  received  French 
Bibles  of  the  Middle  Ages,  which  spread  in  countless  copies  over 
Europe,  from  England  to  Italy."''  Here,  too,  as  recently  in  Ger- 
many, the  Waldenses  were  called  in  to  account  for  the  numerous 
French  Bibles.  "  During  this  period  "  (eleventh  century  to  St.  Louis), 
says  Mr.  Wicksteed  in  the  same  article,  "  falls  that  attack  on  the 
Bible  readers  of  Metz  under  Innocent  III.,  round  which  a  romantic 
legend  has  grown  up,  tempting  uncritical  critics  to  identify  every 
version  of  the  Bible  with  the  supposed  work  of  Pierre  Valdus, 
*  La  Bible  des  Vaudois!  M.  Berger  shows,  with  admirable  diligence, 

that  no  such  work  ever  existed So  ends  *  la  Legende  de 

la  Bible  des  Vaudois!  "^  In  England  the  venerable  Bede  translated 
parts  of  the  Scriptures  as  early  as  the  eighth  century,  and  the 
Psalms  were  translated  by  King  Alfred.  After  the  Norman  Con- 
quest, besides  partial  translations,  we  know  of  a  complete  one 
dated  1290,  and  in  the  fourteenth  century  the  new  version  of  John 
of  Treviso  was  made.  Such  of  our  readers  as  desire  to  know  more 
of  the  vernacular  versions  of  the  Bible  we  refer  to  Spalding's 
History  of  the  Reformation  (vol.  i.,  p.  292).  One  more  fact  may 
be  cited  to  show  how  false  it  is  that  the  Church  forbade  the  reading 
of  the  Bible.  "  How  great  a  number  of  readers,"  says  the  Protestant 
Geffcken,  "  is  presupposed  by  ninety-eight  editions  of  the  whole 
Latin  Bible,  which  are  catalogued  by  Hain  up  to  a.d.  1500  as  num- 
bers 303 1-3 128."     In  the  fifty  years  immediately  succeeding  the 

1  Moll,  Kerkgeschiedenis  van  Nederland  vor  de  Hervorming,  ii.,  334,  quoted  in 
Jostes,  /.  c,  p.  24. 

'  P.  H.  Wicksteed  in  Academy,  No.  647. 
*  Wicksteed  in  the  same  article. 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  ''Reformation:'  199 

invention  of  printing,  so  extensive  a  work  as  the  Latin  Bible— the 
complete  Latin  Bible— is  published  ninety-eight  times,  besides 
eighteen  German  translations,  and  men  will  still  believe  Luther's 
assertion,  that  "  the  Biblia  were  unknown  to  people  under  popery." 
"■  In  the  fifteenth  century,"  says  Prof.  Pearson,  "  it  (the  Catholic 
Church)  certainly  did  not  hold  back  the  Bible  from  the  folk.  And 
it  gave  them  in  the  vernacular  a  long  series  of  devotional  works, 
which  for  language  and  religious  sentiment  have  never  been  sur- 
passed. Indeed,  we  are  inclined  to  think  it  made  a  mistake  in 
allowing  the  masses  such  ready  access  to  the  Bible.  It  ought  to 
have  recognized  the  Bible  once  and  for  all  as  a  work  absolutely 
unintelligible  without  a  long  course  of  historical  study,  and  so 
long  as  it  was  supposed  to  be  inspired,  very  dangerous  in  the 
hands  of  the  ignorant."^ 

The  immorality  of  the  ancient  clergy  has  always  been  a  favor- 
ite theme  with  the  *'  Reformers  "  and  their  admirers.  This  immoral- 
ity, we  are  told  again  and  again,  was  undoubtedly  one  of  the 
chief  causes  of  the  "  Reformation.^^  Let  us  hear,  however,  one  of 
the  best  informed  authorities  on  the  condition  of  England  in 
Henry  VIII. 's  time,  the  late  Prof.  Brewer.  "  Nor  considering  the 
temper  of  the  English  people,  is  it  probable  that  immorality  could 
have  existed  among  the  ancient  clergy  to  the  degree  which  the 
exaggeration  of  poets,  preachers,  and  satirists  might  lead  us  to 
suppose.  The  existence  of  such  corruption  is  not  justified  by 
authentic  documents,  or  by  an  impartial  and  broad  estimate  of  the 
character  and  conduct  of  the  nation  before  the  Reformation. 
There  is  nothing  more  difficult  than  for  contemporaries  to  form, 
from  their  own  limited  experience,  a  just  estimate  of  the  morality 
of  the  times  in  which  they  live;  and  if  the  complaints  of  preach- 
ers and  moralists  are  to  be  accepted  as  authoritative  on  this  head, 
there  would  be  no  difficulty  in  producing  abundant  evidence  from 
the  Reformers  themselves  that  the  abuses  and  enormities  of  their 
own  age  under  Edward  VI.  and  Elizabeth  were  far  greater  than 
in  the  ages  preceding."^ 

Later  researches  strongly  support  Prof  Brewer's  views.  The 
results  of  these  researches  are  laid  down  chiefly  in  the  Benedictine 
Dom  Gasquet's  work  on  "  Henry  VIII.  and  the  Suppression  of 
the  English  Monasteries,"  and  in  the  tenth  volume  of  the  "  Letters 
and  Papers  of  the  Reign  of  Henry  VIII./'  edited  by  James  Gairdner. 
That  sensitively  moral  monarch,  bluff  King  Harry,  appointed  a 
commission  to  visit  the  monasteries,  and  it  is  chiefly  on  the 
strength  of  its  report  that  the  grossest  vices  have  been  imputed  to 

1  Prof.  Pearson  in  Academy,  August  7th,  1886,  p.  85. 

2  Brewer,  "The  Reign  of  Henry  VIII.,"  vol.  ii.,  p.  469- 

200  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

the  English  monks  of  Henry's  time  by  historian  after  historian. 
What  is  the  verdict  of  scientific  history  on  these  charges  ?  There  is 
no  more  fair  and  competent  authority  on  this  period  of  English  his- 
tory and  on  this  question  than  the  Protestant  editor  of  the  records 
of  the  reign  of  Henry  VHL,  James  Gairdner.  Here  is  his  opin- 
ion as  laid  down  in  a  criticism  of  Dom  Gasquet's  work  in  the 
Academy  oi  February  25th,  1888,  p.  125.  "A  mysterious  Black 
Book  is  supposed  to  have  been  compiled  when  the  monasteries 
were  visited  in  the  reign  of  Henry  VHI.;  and  such  extraordinary 
revelations  were  then  made  of  the  dissolute  lives  of  monks  and  nuns, 
that  an  indignant  Parliament  insisted  on  the  suppression  of  these 
dens  of  vice.  That  the  Black  Book  had  disappeared  with  all  its 
damning  evidence,  was  a  fact  which  occasioned  no  difficulty  to  a 
writer  like  Burnet,  who  found  that  in  the  reign  of  Queen  Mary  a 
commission  was  granted  to  Bonner  and  others  to  examine  the 
records  of  "divers  infamous  scrutinies  in  religious  houses."  The 
commission  itself,  indeed,  said  nothing  about  the  destruction  of 
these  records  when  found  ;  but  rather  that  they  should  be  '  brought 
to  knowledge.'  Still  it  was  clear  to  the  Protestant  mind  (at  least 
in  the  days  of  Bp.  Burnet)  that  the  only  object  of  inquiring  after 
such  things  could  be  to  destroy  the  evidences  of  things  casting 
such  deep  discredit  on  the  papal  system.  Well,  whatever  may 
have  become  of  the  *  Black  Book '  itself,  it  is  clear  that  the  de- 
struction of  evidence  could  not  have  gone  very  far ;  for  at  least 
three  or  four  documents  still  exist  (and  were  referred  to  by  Burton 
in  his  "Anatomy  of  Melancholy  "  long  before  Burnet  wrote),  giving 
a  black  enough  account  of  the  state  of  the  monasteries  in  Henry 
Vni.'s  time  just  before  their  suppression.  These  three  or  four 
separate  documents  were  possibly  intended  to  form  parts  of  a  com- 
prehensive book  reporting  on  monasteries  throughout  England  ; 
but  altogether  they  embrace  only  certain  districts,  and  it  is  clear 
only  a  minority  of  the  houses  are  reported  on  even  in  these. 
These  reports  contain  accusations  of  the  foulest  character — often 
of  unmentionable  crimes — against  several  of  the  inmates,  in  a  con- 
siderable number  of  the  houses.  But  they  are  accusations  merely, 
unaccompanied  by  a  particle  of  evidence  to  support  them  ;  and 
we  know  quite  well  now-a-days  by  whom  and  under  what  circum- 
stances they  were  drawn  up.  They  are  in  the  hand-writing  of 
John  ap  Rice,  a  notary  who  accompanied  Cromwell's  visitor,  Dr. 
Legh,  in  the  work  of  inspecting  the  monasteries  ;  and  we  can  dis- 
tinctly trace  in  the  correspondence  of  Dr.  Legh  himself  and  his 
fellow  visitor,  Dr.  Layton,  the  dates  at  which  each  of  these  separ- 
ate reports  was  transmitted  to  their  master It  appears 

that  the  whole  work  was  done  with  such  amazing  rapidity  that  it 
is  simply  out  of  the  question  to  suppose  that  anything  like  the 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the ''  Reformation P  201 

enormities  reported  were  proved  by  anything  like  a  judicial  inquiry. 

....  That  the  case  against  the  monasteries  was  prejudiced, 
appears  clearly  from  some  of  the  letters  of  the  visitors  themselves.' 
When  Layton,  in  a  fit  of  comparative  honesty,  had  spoken  well  of 
the  monastery  of  Glastonbury,  he  was  admonished  that  his  report 
did  not  give  satisfaction  ;  so  he  wrote  immediately  to  apologize  for 
his  *  indiscreet  praise,'  acknowledging  that  the  Abbott  appeared 
'  neither  to  have  known  God,  nor  his  prince,  nor  any  part  of  a 
good  Christian  man's  religion  !'  And  to  avoid  a  similar  mistake 
at  St.  Mary's,  York,  he  writes  that  he  '  supposes  to  find  evil  dispo- 
sition both  in  the  Abbott  and  convent,  whereof,  God  willing,  I  shall 
certify  you  in  my  next  letters.'  It  is  needless  to  say  that  the 
testimony  of  such  an  accuser  is  absolutely  worthless.  And  as  for 
his  fellow,  Dr.  Legh — even  his  associate  Ap  Rice  felt  compelled  to 
write  to  Cromwell  of  his  tyranny  and  extortion,  begging  him  at 
the  same  time  not  to  disclose  that  he  had  done  so,  else  his  life 
would  hardly  be  safe  from  the  bullies  and  serving  men  in  Legh's 

"  Finally  the  accusations,  when  they  had  served  their  purpose, 
were  discredited  even  by  a  royal  commission  issued  immediately 
afterwards  to  report  upon  the  condition  of  the  monasteries  with  a 
view  to  their  suppression.  ....  Strange  to  say,  the  returns 
of  this  commission,  so  far  as  they  have  been  collected  hitherto, 
give  the  monks  in  almost  all  the  houses  a  high  character  for  pro- 
bity, zeal,  hospitality,  and  sometimes  (we  may  add)  for  particular 
kinds  of  industry,  such  as  writing,  embroidery,  or  painting.  Nor 
is  this  all ;  for  it  stands  no  less  clearly  recorded  that  several  of 
these  monasteries  which  look  worst  in  the  reports  of  the  visitors, 
stood  highest  in  the  esteem  of  the  neighbors — the  country  gentle- 
men who  had  the  duty  imposed  upon  them  of  making  these 
returns.  The  huge  mass  of  scandal  compiled  by  Drs.  Legh  and 
Layton  was  clearly  believed  by  no  one,  not  even  by  the  King  or 
Cromwell,  or,  we  may  add,  by  the  visitors  themselves."  "  Some- 
thing much  worse  than  the  grossest  exaggerations,"  says  the 
Athenceum  (Feb.  i8th,  1888),  "something  much  more  like  impudent 
and  enormous  lying — is  the  rule  and  not  the  exception  in  the  re- 
turns of  the  King's  first  inquisitors Perhaps  the  strongest 

impression  that  this  (tenth)  volume  of  the  Calendars  produces 
upon  the  reader  is  not  that  the  history  of  Henry  VIH.  will  have 
to  be  re-written,  but  that  it  has  never  been  written  at  all." 

So  much  on  the  corruption  of  the  clergy  in  England..  In  Ger- 
many similar  charges  were  first  made  against  the  clergy,  and 
above  all  against  the  university  men  in  the  famous  ''  Epistol(2 
Obscurorum  Virorninr  These  '*  obscure  men,"  to  wit,  Ulrich  von 
Hutten,  Mutianus  and  his  friends  of  the  Erfurt  University,  where 

202  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

Luther  formed  one  of  the  circle,  poured  forth  the  most  unmeas- 
ured abuse  against  the  morals,  the  ignorance,  and  the  shabby- 
ragged  dress  of  the  university  clergy.  **  Was  this  a  true  picture 
of  the  university  men  ?  "  asks  Prof.  Paulsen.  "As  regards  their 
hatred  of  poetry,  of  pure  Latin,  of  the  Greek  language,  in  short 
of  humanism,  the  account  which  follows  will  prove  that  the  uni- 
versities did  not  all  deserve  this  reproach.  As  regards  profligacy 
and  disgraceful  neglect  of  dress,  no  one  will  be  surprised  that 
then,  as  at  all  times,  they  were  met  with  at  the  universities. 
About  one  circle  of  university  men  we  are  specially  well  in- 
formed on  this  point,  the  circle  to  which  the  authors  of  this  satire 
belonged.  What  Mutianus,  otherwise  a  respectable  man,  thought 
of  sexual  relations,  we  may  read  in  the  letters,  hitherto  unpub- 
lished, given  by  Janssen  and  Krause,  in  which  he  advises  his  young 
friends  to  help  themselves.  That  Hutten  needed  no  adviser  on 
this  point  is  well  enough  known.  On  the  ragged  appearance, 
poverty,  and  beggary  of  the  same  men  (the  dark  men )  the 
same  works  give  us  manifold,  but  by  no  means  pleasant,  informa- 
tion. It  is  strange  that  Strauss  (the  author  of  the  ^'  Life  of  Christ") 
could  represent  as  the  champion  of  human  liberty  and  German 
culture  the  Franconian  Knight  (Von  Hutten),  who,  wasting  of  a 
wretched  disease,  always  penniless,  but  full  of  magnificent  preten- 
tions, roamed  from  place  to  place  and  stimulated  the  generosity  of 
lords,  spiritual  and  temporal,  with  Latin  verses.  But  he  assailed 
Rome.  I  think  better  weapons  and  better  men  were  needed,  and 
are  still  needed  every  day  in  the  struggle  for  German  liberty  and 
culture."^  How  much  faith  the  unblushing  effrontery  of  Hutten 
and  his  friends  deserves,  it  takes  no  Solomon  to  determine.  On 
many  other  points  of  their  indictment,  Paulsen  has  convicted  the 
"  dark  men  "  of  exaggeration,  falsehood,  and  slander.  Is  it  rash 
to  infer  that  they  exaggerated  on  this  point  also  ?  True,  the  lead- 
ing "  Reformers,''  many  of  whom  were  by  no  means  vestal  virgins, 
were  mostly  run-away  monks  and  apostate  priests ;  true,  Hkewise, 
that  the  German  clergy  of  the  time,  whose  bishops  were  princes 
first,  and,  in  not  a  few  instances,  princes  first,  last,  and  all  the 
time — men  who  too  often  did  not  watch  over  their  flocks  and  their 
pastors — were  far  less  worthy  men  than  the  German  clergy  of 
to-day.  On  the  other  hand,  we  should  not  forget  that  opportunity 
makes  thieves.  Many  of  these  men,  in  other  more  peaceful  days, 
with  no  Luther  and  Carlstadt  issuing  trumpet  call  after  trumpet 
call  to  monks  and  nuns,  summoning  them  to  cast  aside  their 
promises  and  break  their  vows,  might  have  lived  in  honest  ob- 
scurity, instead  of  becoming  firebrands  of  scandal  and  preachers 

1  Paulsen,  /,  c,  p.  51. 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  ''  Reformation.'^  203 

of  sedition.  On  the  whole,  then,  whilst  admitting  many  abuses, 
it  is  safe  not  to  place  implicit  trust  in  the  unblushing  accusers  of 
the  Von  Hutten  type,  and  to  make  great  allowance  even  when  we 
read  the  invectives  of  honest  satirists  and  zealous  preachers. 

Protestant  historians  of  the  past  have  generally  represented  the 
"  Reformation"  as  a  movement  that  swept  over  England  and  Ger- 
many like  a  whirlwind;  the  word  "whirlwind"  hardly  did  justice 
to  the  rapidity  of  the  movement.  It  leaped  from  end  to  end  of 
Germany  like  an  electric  flash.  Reading  these  writers,  you  fancied 
the  whole  German  and  English  peoples,  standing  like  hungry 
birdlings,  anxious  to  be  fed  with  the  pap  of  the  new  and  pure  "  gos- 
pel." It  was  a  heart-moving  picture  :  it  was  more,  it  was  an  appeal 
to  the  jury  on  the  vox  popidi  vox  Dei  principle.  In  these  days  of 
universal  suffrage,  who  could  doubt  that  the  '^  Reformers"  were 
right,  when  they  had  the  majority  ?  But  unluckily  the  muse  of 
history  cannot  be  won  with  sentimental  imagery.  She  brushes  the 
pictures  away  like  cobwebs  and  probes  the  facts.  And  what  are 
the  facts?  "The  Reformation"  (in  England),  says  Prof.  Brewer, 
"did  not  owe  its  origin  to  Tyndale  or  to  Parliament,  to  the  corrup- 
tions of  the  clergy  or  the  oppression  of  the  ecclesiastical  courts. 
There  is  no  reason  to  believe  that  the  nation  as  a  body  was  dis- 
contented with  the  old  religion.  Facts  point  to  the  opposite  con- 
clusion. Had  it  been  so,  Mary,  whose  attachment  to  the  faith  of 
her  mother  was  well  known,  would  never  have  been  permitted  to 
mount  the  throne  or  have  found  the  task  comparatively  easy,  see- 
ing that  the  Reformers  under  Edward  VI.  had  been  suffered  to 
have  their  own  way  unchecked  and  to  displace  from  power  and 
influence  all  who  opposed  their  religious  principles.  Long  down 
into  the  reign  of  Elizabeth,  according  to  the  testimony  of  a  mod- 
ern historian,  the  old  faith  still  numbered  a  majority  of  adherents 
in  England.  The  experiment  would  have  been  hazardous  at  any 
time  from  Henry  VIII.  to  the  Spanish  invasion  if  a  plebiscite 
could  have  been  impartially  taken  of  the  religious  sentiments  of 
the  people.  This  rooted  attachment  to  the  old  faith  and  the  diffi- 
culty everywhere  experienced  by  the  Government  and  the  bishops 
in  weaning  the  clergy  and  their  flocks  from  their  ancient  tenden- 
cies, is  a  sufficient  proof  that  it  was  not  unpopular."^ 

"  I  think,"  says  Bishop  Stubbs,  "that  after  what  I  have  saia,  you 
will  allow  me  to  say  that  I  have  grounds  for  believing  that  Henry 
VIII.  was  the  master,  and  in  no  sense  the  minister,  of  his  people; 
that  where  he  carried  their  good  (?)  will  with  him,  it  was  by 
forcing,  not  by  anticipating  or  even  educating  it.  I  am  obliged 
altogether  to  reject  the  notion  that  he  was  the  interpreter  in  any 

1  Brewer,  "The  Reign  of  Henry  VIII.,"  vol.  ii.,  p.  469- 

204  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

sense  of  the  wishes  of  his  people;  the  utmost  that  he  did  in  this 
direction  was  to  manipulate  and  utilize  their  prejudices  to  his 
own  purposes."^  At  the  beginning  of  Queen  Elizabeth's  reign, 
after  Henry  VIII.  had  used  both  force  and  money  to  wean  his 
nobles  and  people  from  their  allegiance  to  Rome,  after  the  Pro- 
tector Somerset  and  the  other  statesmen  of  Edward  VI.  had 
striven  by  hook  or  crook  to  make  England  Protestant,  after 
Mary's  short  and  in  many  respects  unfortunate  reign,  "  in  number 
the  laity,  who  preferred  the  mass  to  the  prayer-book,  and  perhaps 
the  Pope  to  the  Queen  as  a  spiritual  head,  have  been  reckoned  at 
nearly  two-thirds  of  the  whole  population."'^ 

In  Germany,  the  birth-place  of  the  "  Reformation,''  Luther's  in- 
novations were  by  no  means  received  by  the  people  with  universal 
acclaim.  Luther  himself  was  fully  aware  of  this.  He  did  not 
abolish  the  Mass  at  once  :  not  even  in  the  electorate  of  Saxony, 
where  he  was  permitted  by  the  Elector  to  wield  almost  unbounded 
power  in  religious  affairs.  He  bade  the  preachers  omit  the  words 
in  the  Canon  and  Collect  that  implied  a  sacrifice.  "  But  the  priest 
may  omit  this  readily,  without  its  being  noticed  by  the  common 
people,  and  without  giving  scandal."^  So  Luther  in  1526.  "  Dur- 
ing a  visitation  held  in  the  districts  of  Borma  and  Tenneberg  in 
January,  1526,  by  order  of  the  Selector  of  Saxony,  it  became  ap- 
parent how  Lutheranism,  at  that  time,  had  made  far  from  general 
progress.  In  Tenneberg,  which  included  twelve  parishes,  not  a 
single  clergyman  preached  *  the  Gospel,' z>.,  Luther's  doctrine. 
Only  an  odd  parish  desired  a  change  in  the  sense  of  the  Reform- 
ers."* In  1528  Melanchthon  made  an  official  visitation  of  Thiir- 
ingen.  He  found  the  people  attached  neither  to  the  new  doctrine 
nor  to  its  preachers.  "  We  see,"  he  wrote  in  1528,  "  how  the  people 
hate  us."^  In  1530  things  had  not  improved.  Luther's  father 
lay  critically  ill  at  Mansfeld  ;  the  son  was  anxious,  consoled  his 
father,  but  dared  not  visit  him,  fearing  the  people  might  kill  him. 
"I  am  exceedingly  anxious,"  he  wrote  to  his  father,  "to  come  to 
see  you  in  person  ;  but  my  good  friends  have  advised  against  it 
and  dissuaded  me,  and  I,  myself,  was  forced  to  think  that  I  must 
not  risk  danger  and  tempt  God,  for  you  know  how  lords  and 
peasants  love  me."  The  people  were  still  so  devoted  to  the  old 
Church  that  Luther  maintained :  "  Were  I  willing,  I   am  easily 

1  W.  Stubbs,  "  On  the  Study  of  Mediaeval  and  Modern  History,"  p.  289. 

2  T.  G.  Laws  in  the  English  Historical  Review,  vol.  i.,  p.  514. 

*  Luther,  Sair.tutliche  Werke,  vol.  28,  p.  304-5,  quoted  by  Janssen,  Geschichte  des 
deutschen  Volkes,  iii.,  p.  62.  *  Janssen,  /.  c.  iii.,  p.  56. 

^  Janssen,  /.  r.,  p.  64. 


Myths  and  Legends  of  the  '*  Refonnationr  205 

confident  that  I  could,  by  two  or  three  sermons,  preach  back  my 
people  into  popery  and  establish  new  pilgrimages  and  masses." 
"  I  know  for  certain  that  here  in  Wittenberg  there  are  hardly  ten  that 
I  could  not  mislead,  were  I  willing  to  practise  again  such  holiness 
as  I  practised  in  popery,  when  I  was  a  monk."'  Even  in  1535 
Luther  and  "  the  Saxon  theologians  would  not  concede  the  demand 
of  the  Zwinglian  preachers  to  do  away  with  the  Elevation,  the 
Mass  vestments  and  the  altar  candles,  because  they  feared  thereby 
to  call  forth  excitement  among  the  people.'"  About  the  religious 
feeling  in  Brunswick  two  official  Lutheran  visitors  wrote  to  Bugen- 
hagen  in  1543:  "In  all  churches  and  country  parishes,  though 
lying  near  each  other,  each  one  wishes  to  teach  and  administer  the 
sacrament  after  his  own  head  and  fashion.  Many  parsons  com- 
plain that  the  people  will  not  go  to  the  Lord's  supper,  nay  contemn 
sermons  and  sacraments,  and  say  publicly :  the  parsons  are  not  at  one 
about  the  Gospel,  why  should  we  heed  them  ?  I  will  hold  to  my  old 
faith.'"  ''The  greatest  part  of  the  people,"  said  Court-preacher 
Hieronymus  Rauscher  of  Amberg  in  1552,  "  in  deep  sorrow,  turns 
its  eyes  to  Godless  popery,  foams  and  gabbles  at  all  times:  'Since 
the  new  doctrine  began  its  course,  there  has  been  no  luck  and 
happiness  in  the  world  :  people  grow  worse,  not  better,  in  conse- 
quence of  evangelical  preaching.'  Even  a  generation  later 
Preacher  George  Steinhart,  at  Ottersdorf,  heard  people  say :  "Ah  ! 
Away  with  this  doctrine  !  Under  the  Pope's  rule  things  went  well, 
those  were  good  times,  and  we  had  all  things  in  plenty;  but  since 
the  Gospel  sprang  up,  leaves  and  grass,  luck,  rain,  and  blessings 
have  disappeared."*  In  the  Netherlands  things  looked  very  ill  for 
the  "  Godly"  undertaking  of  the  house  of  Nassau  ;  every  effort  was 
made  to  Calvinize  the  Provinces,  but  met  with  little  success.  "  Of 
the  general  states  and  the  noblest  of  the  land,"  wrote  Count  John 
(of  Nassau),  on  March  13th,  1578,  to  Count  William  of  Hesse. 
"  no  one  has  hitherto  publicly  declared  for  '  religion,'  nor  seriously 
worked  for  it;  of  the  people  only  now  and  then  the  poor  common 

In  England,  Germany,  Holland,  we  see,  there  was  no  violent 
hunger  after  the  "new  gospel,"  and  yet  these  three  countries  were 
the  birthplace,  the  home  and  the  hot-bed  of  the  "  Reformers," 
"  Where  Protestantism  was  an  idea  only,"  says  Bishop  Stubbs,  "as 
in  Spain  and  Italy,  it  was  crushed  out  by  the  Inquisition ;  where, 
in  conjunction  with  political  power  and  sustained  by  ecclesiastical 

1  Quoted  in  Janssen,  /.  c.  iii.,  p.  1 88.  '  Janssen,  /,  c.  iii.,  p.  355. 

3  Janssen,  /.  c.  iii.,  pp.  494-5.  *  Janssen,  /.  c.  iii.,  p.  702. 

5  Janssen,/.  r,  v.,  p.  5. 

2o6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Revie^v. 

confiscation,  it  became  a  physical  force,  there  it  was  lasting.  It  is 
not  a  pleasant  view  to  take  of  the  doctrinal  changes,  to  see  that 
where  the  movement  toward  it  was  pure  and  unworldly,  it  failed; 
where  it  was  seconded  by  territorial  greed  and  political  animosity, 
it  succeeded."^ 

How  unfounded  was  Luther's  assertion  that  before  his  day  little 
preaching  was  done,  we  have  shown  in  the  article  on  the  "  Myths 
of  the  Middle  Ages,"  published  in  the  October  number  of  the 
American  Catholic  Quarterly,  last  year  (p.  604).  The  lack  of 
preaching  could  not  have  caused  the"  Reformation  "  and  its  spread. 
Indeed,  it  is  far  from  true  that,  even  at  the  beginning  of  the  "  Reforma- 
tion" there  was  everywhere  more  preaching  of  the  new  faith  than 
there  had  been  of  the  old.  In  Germany  and  Holland,  no  doubt, 
there  was  no  lack  of  preachers  damning  the  Pope  and  the  Papists 
up  and  down,  and  the  Protestant  dissidents  down  and  up  ;  if  damn- 
ing up  and  down  was  preaching  the  new  faith,  the  new  faith  was 
abundantly  preached.  In  England,  however,  "what  contrasts 
strangely  with  the  reforming  movement  in  Germany,"  says  the 
Saturday  Review,  "so  far  from  any  pains  being  taken  to  present 
the  new  doctrine  to  the  people,  the  pulpit  stood  silent, /<^r//^  by 
order,  as  well  as  from  lack  of  preachers.  The  Council  ordered  the 
bishops  to  prevent  a  thing  so  inconsistent  as  the  preaching  of 
itinerant  ministers,  and  even  the  licensed  preachers,  of  whom  there 
were  very  few,  were  forbidden  to  discourse  except  on  certain  fixed 
days.  Bucer  complained  that  there  were  parishes  where  no  ser- 
mon had  been  preached  for  years.  Whether  from  distrust  of  the 
clergy,  or  from  a  desire  to  keep  the  mass  of  the  people  in  ignorance 
of  the  real  nature  of  the  religious  innovations  being  forced  upon 
them  with  a  high  hand  till  all  was  over,  preaching  was  in  every 
way  discountenanced  or  suppressed,  so  that  in  truth  the  great 
destitution  of  preaching,  which  the  Reformation  produced,  was  the 
main  cause  of  the  beginning  of  English  Dissent."^ 

"  But,  perhaps,"  says  the  same  writer,  "  what  will  most  startle 
those  who  have  been  used  to  take  a  rose-colored  view,  we  do  not 
say  of  the  '  Reformation ' — that  largely  depends  upon  religious 
convictions — but  of  the  English  *  Reformers,'  is  the  evidence  here 
produced  of  the  unscrupulous  tyranny  and  obscurantism  of  their 

whole  method  of  procedure What  is  curious,  and  will  to 

many  readers  be  a  surprise,  is  that  every  means  was  taken  by  those 
in  authority,  as  though  of  deliberate  intent,  to  discourage  learning 

1  Bp.  Stubbs,  "  Lectures  on  Mediaeval  and  Modern  History,"  p.  233. 
»  Saturday  Review,  July  3d,  1886,  p.  22,  in  an  article  on  Rev.   R.  W.  Dixon's 
"  History  of  the  Church  of  England."' 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  "  Reformation:'  207 

and  foster  ignorance,  alike  in  the  higher  classes  and  among  the 
masses  of  the  people.  Thus,  to  begin  with  the  two  universities,  a 
royal  commission  visited  them  in  1549,  which,  under  pretence  of 
reforming,  went  far  to  destroy  them  altogether,  and  Oxford  and 
Cambridge  seemed  in  danger  of  actually  sharing  the  fate  of  the 
monasteries.  Ridley,  whose  name  stood  on  both  commissions, 
attempted  some  ineffectual  resistance, but  was  easily  overborne. 
Dr.  Cox,  Chancellor  of  Oxford,  who  was  on  the  commission,  won 
with  too  good  reason  the  unenviable  nickname  of  Canceller  of  the 
University !  Under  his  auspices  whole  libraries  at  Oxford  were 
destroyed  ;  *  a  cart  load  of  manuscript  on  theology  and  the  sciences,' 
from  Merton,  and  'great  heaps  of  books  from  Balliol,  Queen's, 
Exeter,  and  Lincoln'  were  publicly  burnt  in  the  market-place. 
Meanwhile  the  choristers  and  grammar-school  boys  of  the  different 
College  schools  at  both  universities  were  turned  out  and  the 
schools  themselves  suppressed." 

In  Germany,  we  know  of  no  equally  wanton  destruction  of 
books  and  schools.  Still  the  effects  of  the  "  Reformation"  movement 
were  equally  fatal  to  learning  and  education.  As  early  as  1526, 
the  Saxon  visitors  report  the  almost  universal  destruction  of  the 
parish  schools  in  electoral  Saxony.^  The  younger  humanists  had 
hailed  Luther  as  a  saviour  and  welcomed  his  revolt.  "  Before  long  " 
says  Paulsen,  ^*  the  young  humanists,  who  just  then  so  gaily  ac- 
companied Luther  to  the  war,  and  considered  Erasmus  as  a  timid 
old  man,  were  disappointed.  As  early  as  1524  even  the  dullest 
had  their  eyes  opened.  The  universities  and  schools  almost  came 
to  nothing  amidst  the  tempests  of  the  religious  struggle."  It  is 
instructive  to  look  at  a  few  details.  "  The  university  of  Erfurt  was 
the  only  one  of  the  German  universities  which  adopted  the  new 
doctrine  ;  it  was  also  the  first  that  was  undone  by  it.  .  .  .  After 
1523  immatriculation  stopped  altogether;  the  university  almost 
ceased  to  exist.  ...  In  15  24  the  Erfurt  town-council  cut  down  the 
salary  of  the  rector  of  the  university,  Eobanus  Hessus,  and  in  1526 
he  went  to  Nuremberg.  He  returned  in  1533,  but  the  university 
never  regained  its  strength  ;  after  wasting  for  300  years  it  died." 
At  the  beginning  Melanchthon's  Greek  lectures  at  Wittenberg 
were  crowded  ;  in  1524  four  attended  his  lectures  on  Demosthenes; 
in  1527  the  attendance  was  less;  in  that  year,  however,  the  plague 
drove  Melanchthon  to  Jena.  Leipzig  suffered  greatly;  Frankfort 
on  the  Oder  died  out  entirely  between  1520-30,  partly  because  of 
the  religious  troubles,  partly  in  consequence  of  the  plague.  At 
Rostock  the  number  of  students  sank  rapidly  after  1523;  in  1529 
not  a  single  matriculation;  from  1530-36  the  university  was 
practically  dead.     In  a  report  of  1530  the  council  of  the  university 

1  Janssen,  Gesch.  des  deutschen  Volkes,  iii.,  p.  63. 

2o8  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review^ 

pronounced  the  Martinian,  i.e.,  Lutheran  faction  to  be  the  cause. 
At  Greifswald  no  matriculants  between  1525  and  1539.  At 
Cologne  the  number  of  matriculations  fell  from  3-400  to  between 
36  and  96  in  1527-43.  About  15 15  Vienna  matriculated  600  per 
year;  in  1530  the  whole  number  of  students  was  30.  The  uni- 
versity records,  as  early  as  1522,  claim  that  the  cause  of  the  decline 
is  that  the  Lutheran  sect  advises  against  studies  and  the  taking  of 
degrees.  At  Heidelberg  there  were  more  professors  than  students, 
whilst  at  Basel  the  university  was  suspended  in  1529.  In  both 
universities  the  "Reformation"  was  charged  with  their  ruin.  Ingol- 
stadt,  which  under  the  leadership  of  Eck  destroyed  every  trace  of 
the  vinis  Lutheranwn,  fared  best.  The  average  of  the  matricula- 
tions from  1 5 18-15  50  was  136,  only  36  less  than  in  the  period 
immediately  preceding.^  "  The  same  decline  appeared  in  the  lower 

Dr.  Dixon's  as  well  as  Paulsen's  statements  are  based  on  the 
most  careful  original  research.  They  show  not  only  what  the 
religious  revolution  of  the  sixteenth  century  did  to  destroy,  but  what 
the  Church  of  the  Middle  Ages  had  done  to  build  up,  learning. 
All  the  universities  mentioned,  besides  others  in  Italy,  France, 
Poland,  had  been  founded  by  Catholic  princes  or  cities,  and  none 
without  the  co-operation  of  the  Pope. 

That  Luther,  so  to  say,  rediscovered  the  Bible,  that  he  first  trans- 
lated it  into  German,  that  before  him  little  preaching  was  done  in 
the  vernacular,  that  the  "  Reformation"  was  a  popular  movement, 
that  it  promoted  learning  and  literature, — all  these  well-worn 
assertions  modern  research  has  pronounced  to  be  myths.  There 
remain  a  few  claims  and  statements  which,  while  they  do  not, 
like  the  foregoing,  assail  the  Church,  are  nevertheless  interesting. 
They  illustrate  Lutheran  hero-worship,  and  show  how  dangerous 
it  is  to  accept  without  careful  critical  examination  many  points  of 
Protestant  tradition,  no  matter  how  often  and  how  confidently 
repeated.  They  are  legends  that  grew  up  not  all  in  Luther's  day, 
but  many  of  them  much  later,  perhaps  as  late  as  after  the  Thirty 
Years'  War.  Indeed,  in  some  cases,  Luther's  own  writings  refute  the 
claims  made  for  him  by  his  admirers.  The  first  of  these  legends  is 
the  story  that  Luther  closed  his  speech  before  the  Diet  of  Worms 
in  1 52 1  with  the  memorable  words:  "  Here  I  stand,  I  cannot  do 
otherwise."  Again  and  again  they  have  called  forth  the  admira- 
tion of  Protestant  writers ;  again  and  again  they  have  been  praised 
as  the  expression  of  the  Reformer's  manly  and  earnest  determina- 
tion. Like  the  famous  e  piir  si  muove  of  Galileo,  however, 
Luther's  heroic  expression  turns  out  to  be  unhistorical.     This  was 

1  These  details  are  taken  from  Paulsen,  Gesch.  des  gelehrten  Unterrichts,  p.  138  ff. 
"  Paulsen,  /.  c,  p.  143. 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  "  Reformationr  209 

proved  by  Burkhardt,  a  Protestant,  in  the  "  Theologische  Studien 
und  Kritiken"  (1869,  p.  517-31)-'  Burkhardt's  proposition  is  con- 
firmed by  Balan,who,in  his  Momimenta  Reformatio nis  Lutherance, 
gives  the  contemporary  report  of  Luther's  speech.  It  does  not 
contain  the  famous  traditional  words. 

That  Luther  invented  the  new  high-German  language,  is  a  legend 
which  has  been  repeated  even  quite  recently  over  the  names  of 
such  men  as  Von  Treitschke,  Mommsen,  Droysen,  and  Virchow. 
Luther  himself  says  quite  the  reverse,  and  his  words  are  confirmed 
by  the  best  authorities  on  the  history  of  the  German  language, 
such  as  the  brothers  Wilhelm  and  Jakob  Grimm.  "  In  reply  to 
the  question,  whence  Luther  took  this  language  "  (the  German  of 
his  Bible  and  other  writings),  says  Osthoff,  "he  himself  informs 
us  that  '  he  uses  no  particular  or  peculiar  language  in  German,'  z>., 
no  special  dialect,  but '  the  language  of  the  Saxon  Chancery,'  which 
is  used  by  all  the  kings  and  princes  of  Germany."^  Latin  ceased 
to  be  used  for  documentary  purposes  in  the  first  half  of  the  four- 
teenth century.  For  some  time  thereafter  the  dialect  of  each  princi- 
,  pality  was  used  in  its  official  papers.  Under  Karl  IV.  and  Wenzel 
(i  347-1400),  of  the  Luxemburg-Bohemian  line,  the  Imperial  Chan- 
cery used  a  language  based  on  the  German  spoken  at  Prague,  but 
modified  ;  this  was  gradually  adopted  in  upper  and  central  Ger- 
many. In  the  second  half  of  the  fifteenth  century  the  Saxon  Chan- 
cery gradually  discarded  the  words  peculiar  to  central  Germany, 
and  used  only  such  as  were  common  to  central  and  upper  Germany. 
The  accession  of  Frederick  the  Wise  (1485),  according  to  the 
latest  researches,  marks  the  time  when  the  approximation  of  the 
language  used  by  the  Saxon  Chancery  to  that  used  by  the  Imperial 
Chancery  was  carried  out.  *'  The  language,  therefore,  which  Luther 
introduced  into  general  literary  and  private  use  as  that  of  the 
Saxon  Chancery,  did  not  differ  from  the  language  of  the  docu- 
ments spread  by  Maximilian  I.  and  his  secretaries  throughout  the 

Empire Luther    did    not   create   the    unity    of   German 

speech  as  if  by  a  single  stroke.  Only  the  fifst  firm  and  lasting 
foundation  thereof  was  laid  by  him  and  the  Reformation.  For  a 
long  time  after  in  low-German  countries,  low-German  was  spoken 
in  pulpit,  school,  and  court.  The  Bible,  catechism,  and  hymn-book 
were  even  translated  from  Luther's  text  into  the  several  dialects. 
On  Catholic  Germany,  the  larger  half  of  the  Empire,  the  effect  of 
Luther's  language  as  well  as  of  the  Reformation  itself  was  slight. 
And  Luther's  language,  in  spite  of  its  universalizing  tendency,  was 
still  too  provincial,  nay  too  individually  colored,  to  be  fitted  to  be 

1  Cited  in  Geschichtsliigen,  p.  432. 

2  Osthoff,  Schriftsprache  und  Volksmundart,  p.  4. 

VOL.  XIV. — 14 

2IO  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

a  universal  means  of  communication,  to  become  the  natural 
German  written  and  book  language,  without  further  changes."' 

Another  flower  which  Luther's  admirers  have  striven  to  weave 
into  the  legendary  chaplet  of  his  fame,  is  that  he  was  the  father  of 
German  congregational  singing.  But  one  by  one  the  petals  have 
fallen  from  the  flower,  and  to-day  it  is  uncertain  whether  more  than 
five  or  six  hymns,  and  whether  a  single  one  of  the  melodies  formerly 
ascribed  to  him,  can  justly  and  fully  be  called  his.  Luther  was 
fond  of  singing  and  music,  but  he  himself  never  claimed  to  have 
written  and  composed  all  the  hymns  published  in  his  hymn-book. 
In  the  preface  to  the  edition  of  1535,  he  says  :  "  Now  follow  some 
sacred  songs  made  by  our  forefathers  {von  den  alten  gemacht). 
These  old  songs  we  have  taken  with  us  as  a  testimony  of  some 
pious  Christians  that  lived  before  our  time  in  the  great  darkness 
of  false  doctrine,  that  it  may  be  seen  how  there  have  always  been 
people  who  rightly  knew  Christ  and  by  God's  grace  were  miracu- 
lously preserved  in  this  knowledge."  In  the  preface  to  his  book 
of  "  Christian  song,  Latin  and  German,  for  burial,"  published  in 
1542,  Luther  says  :  "  We  have  also  taken  as  a  good  example  the 
fine  musica,  or  songs,  which  were  used  in  popery  at  vigils,  requiems, 
and  burials,  had  some  printed  in  this  book,  and  in  time  will  take 
more  of  them.  The  song  and  the  notes  are  beautiful ;  it  were 
pity,  should  they  perish.  As  in  all  other  points  they  (the  Catholics) 
far  excel  us,  have  the  finest  divine  service,  fine,  glorious  convents 

and  monasteries so,  too,  they  have  in  truth  much  splendid 

music  or  song,  especially  m  the  monasteries  and  parishes."  Not- 
withstanding Luther's  own  clear  words,  it  became  a  legend  among 
German  Protestants  that  he  first  introduced  German  hymns  in  the 
divine  service.  Many  Protestants  believe  in  this  legend  to  the 
present  day ;  not  a  few  writers  continue  to  repeat  it  even  now. 
Still,  as  early  as  1784,  General  Superintendent  Bernhart,  of  Stutt- 
gart, saw  the  folly  of  this  claim.  "  How  could  so  busy  a  man," 
he  says,  "  have  taken  up  the  writing  of  songs,  composition,  and 
notes?  A  man  who  held  an  office  at  the  university,  published 
numerous  writings,  and  was  overwhelmed  with  questions,  letters 
and  opinions  from  all  quarters.  Luther  in  his  first  hymn-book 
(1524)  made  only  the  first  hymn,  which  bears  his  name.  The  rest 
were  composed  by  Sperato  and  some  unknown  writers."  Schauer, 
also  a  Protestant,  reduced  the  number  of  original  hymn-texts 
written  by  Luther  to  six.  The  others  are  paraphrases  of  the 
Psalms,  modifications  of  old  German  hymns,  and  translations  from 
the  Latin  of  such  hymns  as  the  Veni  Sajtcte  Spiritiis,  the  Te  Deum^ 
etc.     Even  the  most  famous  of  all,  "  Eine  veste  Burg  ist  unser 

1  Osthoff,  Schriftsprache  und  Volksmundart,  pp.  4-7. 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  "  Reformation^  211 

Gott;'  "  A  tower  of  strength  our  God  doth  stand,"  is  only  a  para- 
phrase of  the  46th  Psalm. 

As  a  hymn  composer,  Luther  has  fared  even  worse  than  as  a  text 
writer.  In  the  eighteenth  century  he  was  regarded  as  the  writer 
of  all  the  hymn-book  melodies ;  historical  investigation  gradually 
despoiled  him  of  air  after  air,  until  only  three  melodies  were  left 
to  his  credit.  But  now  W.  Baumker  has  shown  that  there  is 
good  reason  to  doubt  his  authorship  of  even  these  three,  and 
Baumker  is  endorsed  by  some  of  the  best  musical  authorities  in 
Germany.  We  shall  content  ourselves  with  citing  the  opinion  of 
the  non-Catholic  editor  of  the  Allgemeine  Deutsche  Musik-Zeitung^ 
Herr  Otto  Lessmann :  "  In  addition  to  Luther's  other  great  quali- 
ties, tradition  has  attributed  to  him  great  creative  power  in  music ; 
but  after  the  results  of  the  latest  Luther  researches,  the  old 
legend  of  Lutheii's  importance  as  a  composer  may  be  referred  to 
the  realm  of  inventions.  Positive  proof  of  Luther's  authorship 
of  a  single  choral  melody  does  not  exist.  Even  the  most  im- 
portant of  the  hymns  ascribed  to  Luther,  that  song  so  full  of 
strength  and  splendor,  '  Eine  feste  Burg'  {*A  tower  of  strength 
our  God  doth  stand'),  which  is  said  to  have  been  written  and  com- 
posed by  Luther  at  Coburg,  in  1530,  can  hardly  be  regarded  as 
his  intellectual  property — as  far  as  the  music  goes,  if  we  believe 
a  manuscript  note  of  the  Reformer  on  one  of  his  *  Stinimbiicher! 
The  author  of  this  melody  is  probably  Luther's  friend,  Cantor 
Johann  Walther  of  Torgau.  He  presented  to  'the  dear  man  of 
God'  a  manuscript  collection  of  sacred  songs,  in  which  exists  the 

first  copy  of  that  grand  melody Probably  Luther's  work 

as  a  hymm  composer  consisted  in  providing  new  texts  for  old 
Catholic  church  hymns  and  fitting  some  of  the  melodies  to  his 
songs.  It  is  notorious  that  a  series  of  the  hymns  ascribed  to 
Luther  existed  long  before  the  Reformation,  as,  e.g.,  the-  melodies, 
'  Gott  sei gelobet  und gebenedeiet^  '  Komm  heilger  Geist^  *  Herre  Gottl 
'  Mitten  wir  im  Leben  sind,'  *  Gelobet  seist  du  Jesu  Christ^  and  others, 
which  in  'the  choral  books'  of  Kuhnau  and  Gebhard  are  set 
down  as  certainly  written  by  Luther.  Some  melodies  of  Luther's 
hymn-book  were  borrowed  by  Luther  without  a  change,  in 
others  the  alteration  from  pre-Lutheran  Latin  hymns  can  be 
shown,  as,  e.g.,  the  melody  'Jesus  Christus  wiser  Heiland'  is  mani- 
festly taken  from  an  old  pilgrimage  song, '///  Gottes  Nanienfahren 
wir;  which  occurs  in  Oleari's  third  Hymn-Book  of  1525,  and  as 
late  as  1610  in  a  collection  of  old  Catholic  hymns  published  at 
Cologne.  The  melody,  'Der  du  bist  drei  in  Einigkeit;  is  an  old  song, 
'0  lux  beata  Trinitas'  and  the  two  melodies '672m//^;;2  zvir  sollen 
loben  schon;  and,  '  Komme  Gott  Schopfer,  heilger  Getst;  are  adapta- 
tions of  the  Latin  hymns,  'A  solis  ortus  cardine'  and 'Veni  Sancte 

212  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

SpiritKS*  The  hymns  ' Nun  komtn  def  Heiden  Heiland^  and  * Herr 
Gott,  dich  loben  wir!  may  easily  be  traced  back  to  the  hymns, '  Veni 
Re demptor  gentium  '  and  '  Te  Deum  laudamus!  "^ 

Thus  has  historical  research  dealt  with  the  legends  of  Luther 
and  the  Reformation.  In  the  face  of  these  results  it  was  natural 
that  even  men  born  and  trained  in  the  Protestant  faith  should 
doubt  the  benefits  and  necessity  of  Luther's  schism.  "  Could  not 
the  Church  have  been  reformed  from  within?"  asks  Prof.  Paulsen. 
"The  attempts  in  the  fifteenth  century  to  reform  the  clergy 
and  the  monasteries  had  not  been  as  unsuccessful  as  is  often 
asserted.  Might  not  the  abuses  in  church  government  and 
worship  [Kidtus)  have  been  put  down  without  breaking  up  the 
unity  of  the  Church  ?  The  use  of  spiritual  powers  for  secular 
purposes,  probably  the  worst  among  all  the  evils  of  the  Church, 
depended  perhaps  not  so  much  on  the  nature  of  the  institution  as 
on  certain  transient  political  conditions.  ...  It  would  be  foolish, 
also,  to  maintain  that  without  Luther's  intervention  things  would 
have  remained  as  they  were.  Humanism  would  have  continued 
its  action ;  '  barbarism '  would  have  been  banished  by  *  culture,' 
and  *  culture'  would  not  have  been  the  result.  The  historico- 
philological  and  mathematico-physical  investigations  started  by 
humanism  would  have  gone  on  and  produced  their  results.  The 
Church  would  have  cherished  in  her  bosom  the  new  sciences  as 
she  had  cherished  the  old,  and  all  the  wretched  struggle  against 
science,  in  which  the  Church  has  wasted  her  strength,  would  not 
have  taken  place.  The  peace  which  existed  between  the  hierar- 
chy and  science  up  to  the  outbreak  of  the  Church  revolution  would 
have  continued,  and  the  historical  development  of  man  would 
have  gone  forward  more  easily  and  more  gradually."^ 

What  inference  must  be  drawn  from  our  study  of  the  results  of 
modern  historical  science?  That  the  Church  and  the  Papacy  have 
reason  to  fear  true  scientific  and  impartial  historical  criticism  and 
research  ?  that  their  safety  lies  in  darkness  and  concealment  ?  On 
the  contrary,  our  study  leads  us  to  infer  that  Leo  XIII.  knew 
thoroughly  what  he  was  saying  when  he  maintained  that  history 
is  "  one  of  the  arms  most  fit  to  defend  the  Church."  Already 
modern  historical  science  has  tracked  and  run  down  many  errors 
and  fables ;  already  it  has  confuted  many  slanders  and  scattered 
much  prejudice  ;  already  it  has  surrounded  the  Church  with  a 
halo  of  glory  to  which  even  non-Catholics  cannot  close  their 
eyes.  History,  profane  and  ecclesiastical,  as  we  have  said  above, 
does  not  directly  attack  or  defend   the   essentials   or  main  sup- 

^  AUgJ:  Deutsche  Musik-Zeitung,  November  9th,  1883, — Luther  unci  die  Musik — for 
the  fourth  centenaiy  of  Luther  by  Otto  Lessmann,  quoted  in  Geschichtsliigen,  p  353. 
^  Paulsen,  Geschichte  des  gelehrten  Unterrichts,  p.  132. 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  ''  Reformation r  213 

ports  of  the  Church  ;  these  are  in  the  hands  of  theology.  But  his- 
tory has  great  power  to  open  men's  eyes  and  to  dispel  their 
prejudices.  Review  the  roll  of  eminent  historians  that  have  been 
led  back  to  the  Church  by  their  studies.  Ekkard,  Voigt,  Hurter, 
Gfrorer,  Onno  Klopp,  Schlosser,  Bowden,  the  Stevensons,  occur  to 
our  memory  without  effort.  Bear  in  mind  the  powerful  impression 
produced  by  Janssen's  ''  History  of  the  German  People,"  the  many 
conversions  reported  to  have  been  wrought  by  it.  Nor  need  we 
wonder  at  these  effects.  The  hate  of  Rome  and  the  Church  has 
always  been  as  much  the  product  of  political  defamation  as 
of  religious  invective,  of  politics  as  of  bigotry.  Read  the  history 
of  Henry  VIII.  and  his  minister,  Cromwell,  of  Elizabeth,  of  Philip 
of  Hesse,  of  Maurice  of  Saxony.  Do  they  impress  us  as  religious 
zealots,  or  as  astute  ambitious  politicians  ?  Read  the  history  of  the 
Thirty  Years'  War;  are  Wallenstein,  Richelieu,  Mansfeld,  Gusta- 
vus  Adolphus,  Oxenstierna,  types  of  self-denying  apostles,  disin- 
terested missionaries,  or  even  of  religious  enthusiasts  ?  Give  us 
rather  Amru  and  Omar;  their  deeds  have  at  least  a  ring  of 
honest,  if  brutal,  fanaticism ;  but  the  heroes  of  the  Thirty  Years, 
the  Wallensteins  and  the  Mansfelds,  will  impose  on  no  one  who 
does  not  wish  to  be  deceived.  And  yet  perhaps  nothing  has 
created  deeper  religious  hate  in  Germany  than  this  dreadful  war. 
Before  the  Thirty  Years'  War,  Canisius  and  his  Jesuit  brethren 
brought  whole  towns  and  districts  back  to  the  old  faith ;  before 
the  war,  as  we  have  seen,  though  sixty  years  after  Luther's  revolt, 
the  people  sighed  for  the  good  old  faith  and  the  good  old  times ; 
after  that  deadly  struggle  there  is  nothing  but  bitterness  and 
hate.  Again  in  England,  before  the  great  Spanish  Armada,  two- 
thirds  of  all  England  were  still  Catholic ;  afterwards  there  remain 
only  scattered  remnants  in  a  few  counties.  Now,  therefore,  that 
historians  are  gradually  feeling  the  dignity  and  lofty  mission  of 
their  science,  and  see  that  it  is  one  thing  to  be  a  religious  or 
national  pamphleteer,  another  to  be  a  true  votary  of  Clio,  the  much 
abused  Church  of  Rome,  as  the  results  hitherto  obtained  show, 
will  reap  the  benefits  of  the  change.  True,  it  will  take  years  for  the 
truth  revealed  by  scholars  to  percolate  down  to  the  masses  or 
even  to  the  ordinary  teachers  of  the  masses.  Many  a  pulpit  will 
hereafter  reverberate  with  threshed  out  lies ;  many  a  godly  but 
ignorant  journal  will  continue  to  diffuse  long  refuted  error.  But 
even  now  better  informed  journals,  more  carefully  compiled  school- 
books,  blush  to  sully  their  pages  with  all  the  antiquated  trash ;  they 
do  honor  to  the  truth ;  they  teach  their  readers  how  their  fathers 
and  grandfathers  were  fooled  and  gulled  in  many  particulars. 
Even  this  partial  acknowledgment  of  the  truth,  this  partial  rejection 
of  oft  repeated  historical  falsehoods,  will  teach  their  readers  not  to 

214  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

take  on  trust  every  silly  statement,  every  outrageous  attack  on 
Rome  and  "  Romanism." 

In  face  of  results  so  useful,  so  favorable  to  the  Church,  histori- 
cal science  has  a  double  claim  on  the  attention  and  the  respect  of 
Catholics.  They  should  love  and  cultivate  it,  because,  as  the  Holy 
Father  says,  it  is  a  witness  to  the  truth  and  because  it  is  a  means 
most  fit  to  defend  the  Church.  Much,  very  much,  remains  to  be 
done  in  this  field.  Most  of  the  work  that  has  relieved  the  Church 
of  her  odium,  and  awarded  to  her  the  credit  that  is  justly  her  due, 
has  been  done  by  non-Catholics.  Much  of  it  can  be  found  only 
in  learned  periodicals  or  voluminous  publications,  unfit  for  general 
reading.  If  we  look  into  the  historical  reading  available  to  the 
English  reading  Catholic,  the  demand,  we  find,  is  far  greater  than 
the  supply.  Lingard's  great  work  is  the  one  historical  classic  of 
which  we  maybe  proud.  More  than  fifty  years  have  passed  since 
it  was  written  ;  still,  only  a  few  years  ago  a  non-Catholic  firm 
found  it  profitable  to  publish  a  new  edition  of  this  ten-volume 
work,  finer  and  more  attractive  than  any  previous  edition.  How 
eloquent  a  testimony  to  its  worth !  Brilliant  writers  like  Macaulay 
and  Froude  have  been  found  wanting ;  but  Lingard  enjoys  the 
respect  of  Catholic  and  Protestant.  On  Church  history  we  have 
the  translations  of  Darras,  of  Alzog,  and  of  Brueck,  and  they 
have  supplied  a  crying  want.  But  where  is  the  English  reading 
Catholic  to  go  for  the  history  of  France,  Germany,  and  Italy, 
the  great  continental  European  peoples  whose  history  is  the  marrow 
of  modern  European  history,  the  peoples  whose  history  has  been 
especially  made  the  weapon  of  attack  against  the  Papacy  and  the 
Church?  There  is  hardly  a  comprehensive  non-Catholic  English 
history  of  these  nations,  nothing  but  monographs  and  fragments. 
Catholic  works,  deserving  the  name  of  history,  are  wholly  lacking. 
It  is  precisely  this  condition  of  things  that  protects  and  prolongs 
the  life  of  many  an  effete  slander.  Here,  then,  is  a  glorious  field 
for  Catholic  scholars.  Let  them  master  the  last  results  of  recent 
research,  let  them  analyze  them  carefully,  let  them,  as  the 
Holy  Father  says,  dread  to  state  an  untruth,  let  them  not  fear 
to  state  the  truth,  and  they  will  do  yeoman's  service  to  the  Church 
and  to  their  countrymen.  They  will  have  great  advantages.  In 
studying  the  history  of  pre-"  Reformation"  times,  they  will  look  at 
them,  so  to  say,  from  within.  A  great  effort  must  be  made  by  the 
most  honest  non-Catholic  to  appreciate  justly  those  times  and 
their  spirit ;  he  is  as  far  removed  from  them  as  England  is  from 
China.  The  Catholic,  on  the  other  hand,  is  much  nearer  to  the 
Middle  Ages,  nearer,  that  is  to  say,  to  their  religious  and  moral 
spirit.  And  after  all,  on  the  morality  and  the  religion  of  a  nation 
or  an  age,  must  its  history  chiefly  hinge.     Art  has  its  glories, 

Myths  and  Legends  of  the  "  Reformation^  215 

learning  its  fame,  science  its  grandeur ;  but  art,  and  science,  and 
learning  without  morality  and  religion  cannot  secure  the  prosperity 
of  nations,  nor  stay  their  downfall.  So  the  Catholic  historian  has 
a  great  advantage  in  dealing  with  pre-"  Reformation  "  times,  and 
this  is  often  silently  acknowledged  by  non-Catholic  scholars.  Let 
Catholic  scholars,  then,  profit  by  these  advantages.  Let  them  fill 
up  the  gaps  in  English  historical  literature.  Let  them  work  in 
the  spirit  of  Leo  XIII.,  guided  by  the  love  of  truth;  filled  with 
charity  and  moderation,  let  them  state  facts  with  vigor,  but  without 
venom;  If  they  will  thus  set  forth  historic  truth,  they  will  reap 
the  respect  of  all  truth-lovers,  Catholic  and  non-Catholic  ;  they 
will  overturn  many  prejudices  against  the  Church  that  are  already 
tottering,  and  will  contribute  most  effectively  to  defend  the 

So  much  for  Catholic  historical  scholars.  The  layman,  on  his 
side,  once  he  realizes  the  importance  of  history,  once  he  clearly 
sees  how  much  it  can  do  to  promote  the  cause  of  truth  and  religion, 
and  to  place  the  Church  in  her  proper  light  before  his  non-Catholic 
fellow-citizens,  will  not  fail  in  his  duty.  He  will  himself,  no  doubt, 
become  an  earnest  reader  of  history,  and  will  strive  to  interest  his 
children  in  this  attractive  and  useful,  we  may  almost  say  necessary, 
branch  of  learning.  He  will  aid  and  encourage  historical  workers, 
not  only  with  his  purse,  but,  what  is  more  important,  with  his  ap- 
preciation. He  will  help  them  to  rescue  from  oblivion  the  noble 
deeds  of  unsung  heroes  and  patriots  and  the  past  glories  of  the 
Church.  He  will  learn  again  and  again  the  lesson  that  cannot  be 
too  often  taught,  that  all  true  greatness,  whether  in  Church  or 
State,  must  have  its  foundation  in  morality  and  religion.  In  fine, 
he  will  find  in  history  new  reasons  to  cherish  and  admire  his 
Mother  Church,  that  has  done  so  much  for  mankind. 

2i6  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 


THE  English  press  has  supplanted  the  Church  of  England  in 
the  office  of  final  arbiter  of  Christian  truths.  The  usurpa- 
tion commenced  about  fifty  years  ago.  Before  that  time  it  was 
the  clergy,  individually,  who  taught  themselves  and  their  flocks 
what  to  believe.  The  flocks  usually  reciprocated  the  compliment; 
indeed,  the  flocks  taught  as  much  as  did  the  clergy ;  still,  the  system 
worked  harmoniously  in  the  sense  that  the  mutual  authority  was 
at  once  nationally  approved  and  put  in  practice.  Then,  as  the 
power  of  the  press  began  to  grow,  the  mutual  authority  took  the 
newspapers  into  partnership;  so  that  clergy,  laity  and  newspapers 
became  the  combined  teaching-body  which  dictated  what  English 
Christians  ought  to  believe.  At  first,  it  was  the  "  religious  news- 
papers "  alone  which  interfered  in  the  domain  of  dogmatic  truth ; 
the  editors  of  these  newspapers  imagining  themselves  to  be 
apostles ;  each  one  an  apostle  to  his  own  party.  But  very  soon 
the  secular  press  came  to  discover  that  there  was  an  immense 
deal  to  be  made  out  of  religion ;  that  a  judicious  admixture  of 
theological  leading  articles  with  political  or  painfully  mundane 
grooves  of  advocacy  would  be  sure  to  increase  a  paper's  circula- 
tion by  paying  court  to  a  new  circle  of  subscribers.  Thus  the 
Times,  forty-five  years  ago,  apprehending  that  the  new  "Puseyism" 
was  likely  to  catch  the  national  religious  taste,  set  to  work  to  write 
up  the  Oxford  School  and  to  advocate  High  Church  doctrines 
and  ritual.  For  many  months  the  Times  confessed  itself  Puseyite. 
Then  came  a  mysterious  silence  on  the  subject.  The  T]:;;^^.?- feelers 
of  the  national  pulse,  gradually  perceiving  that  the  Protestant 
prejudice  was  in  the  ascendant  over  what  was  called  the  aesthetic 
craze,  after  a  discreet  interval  of  a  few  weeks,  veered  right  around 
to  the  opposite  side  and  boldly  censured  what  they  had  so  re- 
cently written  up.  The  lesser  journals  took  their  cue  from  the 
great  one.  Just  as  to-day  most  of  the  newspapers  are  anti- Irish, 
because  the  Times,  the  leading  journal,  has  set  the  fashion,  so  in 
those  days  most  of  the  newspapers  returned  to  Protestantism 
directly  the  great  Jupiter  had  veered  around.  Still,  all  the  papers 
continued  to  be  Christian,  though  they  turned  their  backs  on  the 
"  new-fangled  Popery."  For  twenty  years  there  was  no  apology 
for  freethinking.  No  morning,  evening,  weekly  or  monthly  organ 
ever  ventured  to  plead  the  cause  of  infidelity.  Up  to  about  the 
year   1885   there  was  little  more  than  a  feeling  the  way  in  such 

1  he  Tendency  of  Ejiglish  Journalism.  217 

speculations  as  might  possibly  lead  to  dangerous  doubts,  yet  were 
only  hazarded  as  the  legitimate  searchings  after  truth. 

And  now  comes  the  curious  fact  that  it  was  not  until  the  country 
had  declined  to  be  wooed  by  the  new  Ritualism,  and  had  at  the 
same  time  given  manifest  indications  that  it  would  not  return  to  the 
Catholic  Church,  that  English  journalism  began  to  play  fast  and 
loose  with  the  new  freethinking,  and  to  publish  extracts  from  the 
writings  of  clever  skeptics.  Here  we  reach  a  "moral"  which 
should  be  instructive  to  those  Englishmen  who  pin  their  faith  on 
their  ecclesia  docens,  the  press.  It  used  to  be  urged,  fifty  years 
ago,  that  a  "  free-press  "  and  the  "  whole  truth  "  would  be  neces- 
sarily sympathetic  experiences  ;  that  a  newspaper,  if  untrammeled, 
would  be  sure  to  be  first  honest,  then  broadly  comprehensive  of 
"  both  sides."  Protestants  did  not  realize  that  a  newspaper,  like  a 
shopkeeper,  has  to  "  dress  the  window  "  so  as  to  attract  the  most 
customers ;  so  that  if  "  the  circulation  goes  down  "  another  line 
must  be  taken,  another  style  of  literary  wares  must  be  offered. 
What  would  be  obvious  to  any  commercial  man  of  the  world  was 
never  suspected  by  the  ardent  votaries  of  a  free  press.  They  took 
it  for  granted  that  the  religious  advocacy  must  be  sincere;  that 
there  could  not  possibly  be  intentional  suppressio  veri ;  that  the 
editor  and  his  staff  would  have  but  one  object  in  life,  to  enlighten 
their  readers  on  all  aspects  of  all  truths.  The  exact  opposite  of 
this  surmise  would  have  been  nearer  the  fact.  The  religious  news- 
papers (we  are  speaking  principally  of  the  "  Church  organs")  were 
simply  combatants  who  sought  to  strike  down  their  adversaries 
without  one  thought  of  charity  or  of  truth-loving.  To  publish 
everything  that  could  possibly  injure  an  opponent,  and  to  suppress 
everything  that  could  possibly  serve  his  cause,  were  the  lofty 
maxims  of  the  apostles  at  their  desks.  For  some  forty  years  has 
one  Church-newspaper,  The  Rock,  adopted  this  eminently  Chris- 
tian rule  of  life.  Few  issues  have  been  without  their  Roman 
Catholic  scandal,  few  without  their  travesty  of  Catholic  truths. 
And  the  High  Church  organs  are  conducted  on  the  same  prin- 
ciples. The  grand  object  being  to  prove  the  superiority  of  Angli- 
can heresies,  this  is  best  done  by  misrepresenting  Catholic  truths. 
Here,  then,  we  have  one  blessing  of  a  "  free "  press.  Here  we 
have  the  development  of  that  odd  substitute  for  the  Divine  Church, 
the  printed  sheets  of  party  acrimony  and  commercial  greed.  In 
secular  newspapers  such  a  development  was  a  matter  of  course. 
But  in  religious  newspapers,  supposed  to  teach  the  whole  of  the 
truth,  the  grooved  falsehoods  might  almost  shock  even  the  pro- 

It  would  be  hard  to  say  whether  the   secular  or  the  religious 
newspapers   write  the   niore   infallibly  about  religion.      Perhaps 

2i8  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

there  is  an  airy  assumption  about  the  secular  organs  which  is  the 
more  captivating  because  it  is  so  easy.  The  secular  organs,  not 
being  hampered  by  responsibility  (they  only  set  up  to  be  critics, 
not  to  be  teachers),  are  more  sublimely  impartial,  more  disdainful 
of  doctrinal  differences,  than  the  grooved  apostles  of  this  heresy  or 
of  that.  Thus  the  Daily  Telegraph,  when  greeting  Mr.  Herbert 
Spencer  as  an  advocate  for  the  doing  away  with  Christianity, 
called  attention  to  the  *'  remarkable  passages  "  in  his  arraignment, 
and  then  passed  on  to  write  about  the  theatres.  As  a  secular 
newspaper,  the  Daily  Telegraph  would  plead  its  innocence  in 
merely  quoting  a  score  of  lines  from  an  infidel  writer;  the  inci- 
dental circumstance  that  a  quarter  of  a  million  readers  would  be 
told  that  the  quoted  passages  were  '*  remarkable  "  being  perhaps  un- 
fortunate but  journalistic.  This  is  the  way  in  which  the  secular 
newspapers  do  the  harm,  by  calling  attention  to  what  would  other- 
wise pass  unheeded:  The  masses  do  not  read  Mr.  Herbert  Spencer ; 
so  the  daily  newswriters,  being  aware  that  his  blatant  infidelity  is 
the  only  part  of  his  philosophy  they  would  understand,  serve  it 
up  on  a  separate  dish  for  the  incitement  of  their  palates,  because 
its  pungency  will  act  like  condiments  to  their  morals.  Fifty  years 
ago  no  newspaper  would  have  quoted  such  passages,  still  less 
would  they  have  been  referred  to  as  remarkable.  But  this  is  one 
of  the  tendencies  of  English  journalism — to  sow  broadcast  the 
most  poisonous  tares  of  mental  evil,  utterly  reckless  of  the  harm 
done  to  the  multitude.  Now,  the  religious  newspapers  go  on  a 
very  different  tack.  They  abhor  infidelity,  and  sincerely;  but 
they  perhaps  abhor  the  Catholic  Church  quite  as  much  ;  so  they, 
too,  publish  as  **  remarkable "  every  scandal  they  can  get  hold 
of,  which  can  be  made  to  tell  against  the  Catholic  religion ;  while 
they  commonly  decline  to  publish  its  contradiction,  still  more  to 
express  regret  for  giving  scandal.  After  all,  there  is  little  to 
choose  between  the  two.  But  where  the  religious  newspapers 
have  the  advantage  of  their  secular  rivals  is  in  their  assumption 
that  because  they  do  teach,  they  can  teach.  It  is  a  curious  dream 
of  the  Protestant  mind — it  has  always  been  so,  it  must  necessarily 
be  so — that  because  some  one  must  teach  and  no  one  knows  who 
is  the  teacher,  therefore  everyone  can  teach  who  does  teach.  The 
religious  newspapers,  each  and  all,  adopt  this  postulate.  Each  one 
claims  that  it  can  teach,  for  the  simple  reason  that  it  does  teach, 
though  it  will  not  allow  that  its  opposing  newspapers  can  teach  at 
all.  And  the  readers,  like  the  writers,  have  their  postulate.  They 
take  it  for  granted  that  because  they  approve  the  teaching  of  the 
particular  organ  for  which  they  are  content  to  pay  their  sixpence, 
therefore  that  particular  organ  can  teach  the  truth ;  the  teacher 
being  created  orthodox  by  the  taught;  graduating  as  infallible  by 

The  residency  of  English  Journalism.  2 1 9 

the  "nobis  examinatoribus  satisfecit "  which  is  given  by  admiring 
readers  to  their  own  organ.  This  may  seem  comic,  but  it  is  true. 
There  are  many  thousands  of  English  Protestants,  devoted  members 
of  the  EstabHshed  Church,  who  would  never  permit  an  Anglican 
newspaper,  albeit  read  by  bishops,  to  lie  upon  their  table  or  to 
pass  their  doors  until  they  had  sat  in  judgment  on  its  teaching  on 
every  doctrine  ;  had  given  it  their  pontifical  sanction  and  approval ; 
and  so,  "  permissu  superiorum,"  had  suffered  it  to  go  forth  to  the 
world  with  the  unsurpassable  authority  of  (their)  Holy  See. 

Let  it  be  asked,  then  :  What  is  the  tendency  of  religious  jour- 
nalism so  far  as  belief  or  unbelief  may  be  prospered  ?  There  are 
three  distinct  grooves  of  religious  journals:  (i)  the  High  Church 
Anglican,  whether  Ritualist  or  Moderate;  (2)  the  Low  Church 
Anglican,  whether  middle  class  or  rabid;  (3)  the  Dissenting, 
whether  Sectarian  or  Independent — though  these  last,  somewhat 
curiously,  are  not  numerous.  Now  the  tendency  of  Ritualist 
journalists  is  to  abstractions.  They  write  exclusively  of  purely 
visionary  theories.  They  preach  the  necessity  of  authority,  but 
abuse  their  bishops.  They  urge  the  duty  of  obedience,  but  scold 
their  teachers.  They  proclaim  themselves  the  ardent  apostles  of 
Catholic  unity,  but  vilify  the  Catholic  Church — when  it  disagrees 
with  them.  Four  out  of  five  High  Church  newspapers  take  this 
line.  The  old-fashioned  and  highly  respectable  Guardian  is  alone 
content  to  preach  serenity  and  acquiescence.  This  organ  repre- 
sents "the  Church  of  England;  "  not  the  flights  and  the  ecstasies 
of  the  "Anglo-Catholics,"  nor  the  Puritanism  plus  the  cant  of  the 
Low  Church  party,  but  the  steady  Churchmanship  which  has  been 
the  backbone  of  the  Establishment  since  the  days,  say,  of  Arch- 
bishop Laud.  The  tendency  of  the  Guardian^  therefore,  is  to  "  let 
alone."  "  Quieta  non  movere  "  is  its  motto.  Probably  it  is  the 
only  Church  of  England  paper  which  is  really  practical,  or  which 
does  not  seek  to  ruin  the  Establishment  by  dividing  it. 

The  Low  Church  organs  are  mere  scandal-mongers.  Their 
reason  of  being  is  to  abuse  "  Popery."  Their  theology  is  sentiment, 
their  controversy  is  bitterness,  and  their  Protestantism  is  fib-telling 
about  Catholics.  Their  tendency  is  to  bathos  or  imbecility.  Nor 
have  they  any  strong  party  which  they  can  serve.  The  old  Evan- 
gelical party  is  dead  and  gone.  It  did  immense  good  in  its  day 
by  preserving  the  sentiment  of  Christianity,  and  with  the  sentiment 
a  vast  amount  of  practical  piety.  All  that  is  left  now  of  this  really 
earnest  party  is  its  Puritanism  without  its  intensity,  its  combative- 
ness  without  its  quiet  faith.  The  tendency,  therefore,  of  the  Low 
Church  organs  is  to  a  feminine  sentimentality  without  backbone 
of  creed  or  of  much  educatedness.  The  Ritualists  have  deprived 
Low   Churchism   of  its   historic  foundation  by  showing  up  the 

220  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

"  Reformation  "  as  a  fraud.  The  Broad  Churchmen  have  fairly  driven 
it  out  of  the  field  by  expanding  their  own  theology  so  as  to  include 
it.  The  scientific  men  have  laughed  it  to  scorn  as  a  mere  indulg- 
ence of  feelings  and  emotions.  As  a.  school,  it  has  no  place  among 
the  working  powers.  Many  so-called  Evangelicals  are  admirable 
Christians ;  but  this  is  from  the  traditions  which  cling  to  them  as 
well  as  from  a  simple  ignorance  of  Catholic  truths.  Their  organs, 
seeming  to  know  that  their  day  is  past,  can  only  go  on  hammering 
away  against  Popery. 

It  would  not  be  easy  for  an  outsider  to  '^  class  "  the  periodicals 
which  are  announced  as  being  the  organs  of  the  sects.  Thus,  why 
twelve  of  them  should  be  called  the  "  twelve  non-sectarian  papers," 
or  why  one  in  particular  should  be  entitled  "Nonconformity;" 
why  the  Primitive  Methodists  should  have  only  one  organ,  while 
the  Wesleyans  enjoy  the  privilege  of  two ;  or  why  the  Baptists 
should  require  two  organs  to  express  their  views,  seeing  that  they 
differ  so  little  from  the  Methodists;  or  why  the  Society  of  Friends 
should  need  two  organs — unless  it  be  for  the  advertisement  of  their 
good  works — are  all  riddles  which  an  outsider  cannot  guess,  and 
which,  probably,  "proprietors  "  alone  can  fully  solve.  Some  of 
these  papers  are  well  toned ;  they  are  amiable,  philanthropic,  and 
not  sectarian  ;  they  are  only  accidentally  of  narrow  compass,  their 
spirit  being  generous  and  sympathetic.  Dissent,  being  a  plant  of 
English  growth,  is  at  home  in  the  little  province  of  its  enterprise. 
Not  one  dissenter  in  a  hundred  bears  malice  towards  the  sects 
which,  for  some  caprice,  are  differently  named  to  his  own.  Dissent 
is  more  magnanimous  than  is  Low  Churchism ;  certainly  more  so 
than  is  Ritualism  or  High  Churchism.  Nor  are  its  organs,  as  a 
rule,  nearly  so  bitter;  though,  in  Scotland,  the  Presbyterians  (who 
would  be  shocked  if  we  called  them  dissenters)  are  normally  bitter 
against  Catholics  and  against  Episcopalians. 

But  if  it  be  asked,  is  the  general  tendency  of  religious  journal- 
ism towards  union  with  or  separation  from  the  Catholic  Church? 
the  answer  is  that  the  majority  of  the  journalists  are  anxious  that 
the  Catholic  Church  should  submit  to  them,  but  that  they  have  not 
the  remotest  idea  of  submitting  to  the  Catholic  Church. 

Indeed,  there  is  no  more  desire  for  Catholic  unity  indicated  by 
writers  for  the  religious  journals  than  there  is  by  the  writers  for 
the  secular  journals.  A  glance  at  the  five  hundred  and  eighty- 
three  daily  papers  of  the  United  Kingdom,  were  anyone  disposed 
to  run  them  through,  would  probably  disclose  a  common  indiffer- 
ence to  every  form  of  schism  or  heresy,  such  as  might  best  be 
expressed  by  the  word  "  Liberal."  Religious  Liberalism,  with  the 
journalists,  means  indifferentism.  It  sounds  much  better  to  say 
that  you  are  tolerant  of  others'  views  than  that  you  are  without 

The  Tendency  of  English  Journalism. 



any  fixed  views  of  your  own  ;  yet  the  word  Liberal  means  in  re- 
ligion, "  it  does  not  matter;"  and  this  is  the  religious  Liberalism 
of  English  newspapers.  The  secular  journals  affect  a  superb  mag- 
nanimity when  they  plead  for  "equality  of  rights  all  round  ;"  pu*t- 
ting  themselves  in  an  attitude  of  superiority  to  all  contentions,  as 
though  their  minds  were  too  colossal  to  stoop  to  details.  Indeed, 
there  is  no  subject  on  which  the  journalists  are  so  didactic  as  in 
exhorting  to  the  supreme  duty  of  profound  indifference.  Were  it 
possible   that,  in   their  superiority,  they  could   grow  angry,  they 

would   lash  the  wicked  men  who  believe  in  religious  dogma, on 

the  necessity  of  having  a  creed  and  of  sticking  to  it, with  a  se- 
verity that  would  be  simply  awful  for  them  to  read,  and  which 
would  make  them  feel  themselves  to  be  criminals  of  deepest  dye. 
They  can  forgive  almost  every  fault  except  dogmatism.  We  all 
know  that  the  unpardonable  sin  of  the  Catholic  Church  is  in  teach- 
ing that  there  can  be  only  one  Christianity  ;  but  the  unpardonable 
sin  of  Protestants — in  the  estimation  of  their  journalists — is  in 
the  not  admitting  that  all  religions  are  equally  good.  Now,  the 
journalists  are  so  superior  to  common  people  that  there  is  no  fear 
of  their  tumbling  (in  type)  into  this  sin.  They  might  do  it  in  pri- 
vate life  ;  but  professionally  they  are  impeccable,  so  far  as  to  never 
appear  to  believe  in  anything.  They  write  of  Christianity  in  the 
abstract  as  a  most  respectable  and  time-honored  tradition ;  which, 
though  possibly  it  may  be  only  a  beautiful  superstition,  is  en- 
titled to  historic  credit  as  an  old  friend.  When,  however,  Protes- 
tants affirm  that  there  must  be  dogma,  the  journalists  say,  "  No, 
here  you  exceed  your  liberties.  We  permit  you  to  believe  in  the 
fact  of  a  redemption  ;  but  when  you  insist  on  Christian  dogma  we 
must  rebuke  you  ;  for  this  is  to  be  illiberal,  and,  therefore,  wicked." 
Religious  Liberalism — supposing  it  were  possible  to  define  it — 
is  the  right  of  not  believing  what  any  authority  declares  to  be  true  ; 
and  this  on  the  ground  that  no  authority  can  exist,  save  only  by 
the  individual  approval.  (We  are  speaking,  of  course,  solely  of 
Christian  authority.)  So  that  the  journalists,  after  all,  are  con- 
sistent in  their  measure  when  they  preach  against  the  insisting  on 
dogma,  since  dogma  without  authority  would  no  more  be  possible 
than  would  obedience  without  somebody  to  command.  But  the 
journalists  go  a  big  step  further  than  this ;  for  they  preach  that 
there  ought  not  to  be  authority ;  that  it  is  a  positive  blessing  to  be 
without  the  necessity  of  believing  anything  ;  that  the  joy  of  life  is 
in  the  intellectual  rambling  through  the  possibles,  with  no  goal  but 
the  possible  arriving  at  the  slightly  probable.  This  postulate  being 
granted,  religious  liberalism  can  have  no  difficulty  in  passing  on  to 
formulate  certain  principles;  and  these  are:  (i)  nobody  knows 
anything  for  certain ;  (2)  therefore,  common  sense  teaches  respect 

222  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

for  religious  ignorance.  And  so  the  journalists  might  define  their 
religious  liberalism  in  this  way :  *'  a  quiet  contempt  for  one's  own 
convictions,  because  one  must  have  a  quiet  contempt  for  other  peo- 
ple's ;"  the  corollary  being  "  a  quiet  respect  for  the  quiet  contempt 
with  which  everybody  must  regard  our  convictions  and  their  own." 
Now,  when  we  return  from  this  digression  to  the  inquiry  which 
we  made  just  now,  "  Is  the  general  tendency  of  religious  journal- 
ism towards  union  with,  or  separation  from,  the  Catholic  Church  ?" 
we  see  at  once  that  all  union  is  out  of  the  question  where  there  is 
nothing  certain  about  which  two  people  can  be  united.  And  so, 
as  a  matter  of  fact,  our  five  hundred  and  sixty-three  daily  papers 
seldom  speak  of  the  reunion  of  Christendom  save  as  they  would 
speak  of  the  pleasant  amenities  of  a  social  party;  of  that  harmony 
of  good  breeding  and  good  fellowship  which  makes  life  so  much 
more  agreeable,  and  perhaps  more  virtuous.  A  union  on  all  points 
of  the  Christian  faith  is  not  desired,  because  it  presupposes  au- 
thority; and  authority,  in  matters  of  faith,  is  thought  to  be  as 
little  desirable  as,  in  matters  of  the  State  or  household,  it  is  thought 
requisite.  Here,  then,  we  have  a  direct  tendency  to  continued 
schism.  English  journalism  gives  no  sign  of  desiring  to  heal 
English  divisions,  because  it  treats  those  very  divisions  as  not  dis- 

Is  there  any  connection  between  the  secular  teaching  of  English 
journals  and  the  religious  ideas  or  impressions  of  English  people  ; 
or  does  the  tone  or  spirit  of  secular  teaching  at  all  affect,  indirectly, 
the  prospects  of  religion  throughout  the  country  ?  If  we  assume 
that  there  are  four  grooves  in  chief  in  popular  journalism, — the 
political,  the  social,  the  literary,  and  the  religious, — can  these 
grooves  at  all  react  on  one  another  ?  Undoubtedly  they  do.  Poli- 
tics affect  religion  in  its  action,  in  the  enjoyment  or  the  restriction 
of  its  liberties.  At  the  present  moment  in  England  the  only  point 
where  politics  come  into  actual  collision  with  religion  is  in  the 
School  Board  principle  of  excluding  religious  teaching  from  the 
daily  life  and  schooling  of  young  people.  It  is  not  necessary  here 
to  say  more  on  this  point  than  that  the  Catholic  hierarchy  are  con- 
tending bravely  against  such  paganism.  Some  of  the  journals 
are  following  the  counsel  of  Cardinal  Manning,  and  are  being 
taught  by  him  what  is  true  Liberalism,  what  is  false. 

But  to  speak,  next,  of  the  social  groove  :  Can  its  treatment  by  the 
journalists  at  all  affect  the  national  religious  creed  ?  Only,  of  course, 
in  the  degree  of  the  respect  which  it  shows  to  what  are  called  ethical 
principles.  Now,  here  we  may  be  reminded  that  the  institution, 
"  society  journals,"  must  have  a  tendency  to  enfeeble  social  ethics. 
At  least,  many  Catholic  writers  have  seemed  to  think  so.  Perhaps, 
however,  this  is  an  exaggerated  estimate.     It  may  be  hazarded 

The  Tendency  of  English  Journalism.  223 

that  their  influence  is  superficial.  Since  they  spring  only  out  of 
the  lightest  vanities  of  the  social  life,  they  minister  only  to  that 
feeble  class  of  persons  who  take  delight  in  fashionable  small-talk 
or  in  scandals.  Besides,  at  least,  thev  make  people  timorous  of 
being  "  pilloried,"  and  so  exercise  a  certain  salutary  restraint. 
They  are  rather  weak,  perhaps,  than  vicious  in  their  object  They 
simply  proceed  on  the  principle  that,  of  the  three  levers  which 
move  society — popularly  said  to  be  vanity,  love,  interest — the  most 
money  is  to  be  made  out  of  appeals  to  vanity.  That  they  are 
shamelessly  personal  is,  at  once,  their  greatest  fault  and  their  most 
powerful  attraction  to  their  readers.  Indeed,  the  breadth  of  their 
personalities  is  their  real  offence.  It  is  quite  a  new  offence  in 
"  respectable "  journalism.  Twenty  years  ago  a  "  fashionable 
column"  in  the  Morning  Post  was  all  the  pabulum  which  Vanity 
Fair  could  find  to  feed  upon.  Now,  we  have  hundreds  of  columns 
every  week,  in  some  couple  of  dozen  so-called  society  papers, 
which  are  intended  to  inform  '^  the  people  "  of  what  the  "  upper 
ten  thousand  "  do,  and  to  introduce  them  (in  print  only)  to  their 
drawing-rooms.  Yet  the  tendency  of  such  journalism  is  rather  to 
excite  curiosity  than  to  do  harm  by  lifting  the  veil  from  private 
lives.  Bad  taste,  bad  form,  would  be  the  severest  imputation  which 
such  very  morbid  journalism  could  be  said  to  merit.  In  the  very 
feet  that  they  tell  us  that  they  intend  to  be  personal — that  they 
exist  only  to  gossip  of  persons  who  are  "  in  society," — we  are  fore- 
warned of  the  thin  ice  they  are  about  to  tread  upon ;  and  we  know 
that  actions  for  libel  dog  their  steps.  So  that  the  danger  is,  per- 
haps, more  to  themselves  than  to  their  readers.  Besides,  they  can-^ 
not  be  said  to  be  more  personal  than  are  the  newspapers.  And, 
unquestionably,  there  is  more  harm  done  by  personal  writing  in 
the  newspapers  than  there  is  by  personal  writing  in  the  "  society 
papers."  In  the  newspapers  we  are  not  forewarned  of  the  pro- 
fessed purpose.  We  take  up  a  morning  paper,  and  find  that  a 
man's  honesty  has  been  grossly  assailed  in  a  leading  article;  and 
this,  too,  on  the  sole  ground  that  his  politics  happen  to  be  unpal- 
atable to  the  editor  (or  the  proprietor)  of  the  "  organ."  (We  must 
speak  of  this  scandal  in  connection  with  social  ethics,  because  it  is 
common  to  most  classes  of  English  papers.)  Thus,  Mr.  Glad- 
stone is  spoken  of  by  a  Tory  journal  as  a  man  who  is  *'too  ob- 
viously without  even  a  shred  of  sincerity  in  his  character."  The 
Irish  members  of  Parliament  are  dismissed  by  a  titled  Tory  as 
*'  men  who  accept  money  to  ruin  their  country."  Mr.  Parnell  is 
accused  of  writing  shameless  letters — of  which  the  origin  is  as- 
tutely hid  by  the  Times  newspaper— and  the  Tory  party  acquiesce 
in  this  facile  method  of  throwing  mud,  without  inquiring  even 
"what  is  the  authority?"     In  some  of  the  religious  papers  per- 

224  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

sonalities  are  equally  common.  A  Protestant  bishop  is  spoken  of 
by  a  Ritualist  journal  as  "a  mere  Dissenter  who  likes  to  stick  to 
the  loaves  and  fishes;"  while  converts  to  the  Catholic  Church  have 
been  pronounced  by  one  censor  as  "  men  of  weak  intellect  or 
weaker  character."  Thus  personalities  are  used  as  perfectly  legiti- 
mate weapons,  even  to  the  extent  of  trying  to  ruin  men's  charac- 
ters. It  is  true  that  nothing  so  disgraceful  as  the  libels  on  Mr. 
Parnell  has  been  known  in  the  "  respectable  "  journalism  of  the 
last  fifty  years ;  but  the  spirit  of  the  attack  is  common  to  most 
newspapers,  which  hope  to  prosper  their  tactics  by  personalities. 
Now,  this  tendency  is  growing  in  force  from  year  to  year.  It 
would  be  platitude  to  speak  of  its  vileness  or  its  meanness. 

Let  us  refer  to  another  tendency,  equally  contemptible  with  per- 
sonalities, and  born  of  the  same  malice  of  partisanship.  The  sup- 
pression of  truth,  with  the  false  "  reporting  "  of  opponents,  is  quite 
a  recognized  institution  in  party  journalism.  (We  find  this  vice 
rampant  in  all  the  four  grooves  of  journalism — the  political,  the 
social,  the  literary,  and  the  religious.)  One  or  two  ordinary  ex- 
amples may  be  given.  Thus,  if  a  Home  Ruler  makes  a  speech, 
it  is  cut  short  by  hostile  journals  so  as  to  thin  its  force  or  make  it 
quite  pointless.  If  a  thousand  facts  in  Ireland  all  tend  in  one 
direction,  but  one  fact  seems  to  tend  in  another,  then  the  thousand 
facts  are  ignored,  but  the  one  fact  is  made  the  subject  of  a  highly 
ethical  and  didactic  leading  article.  If  the  Pope  issues  an  Ency- 
clical against  heresies,  not  a  word  of  it  is  quoted  in  an  English 
journal;  but,  if  he  writes  to  the  Irish  bishops  to  condemn  excep- 
ttional  tactics,  there  is  not  a  newspaper  that  does  not  claim  him  for 
its  authority.  A  hundred  such  examples  might  be  enumerated. 
Thus,  Suppression  and  Personalities  are  the  two  favorite  weapons 
of  what  are  called  party-organs  in  Church  and  State. 

As  to  literature — which  we  referred  to  as  a  fourth  groove  in  the 
popular  press — new  books  are  reviewed  by  most  journalists  in  pre- 
cisely the  same  spirit  of  partisanship.  Each  organ  notices  the 
books  of  its  own  party,  but  either  ignores  or  makes  light  of  its 
opponents'.  This  is  as  true  of  the  *'  Church  "  organs  as  of  the 
secular  ones.  Thus,  reviewing  is  made  to  indirectly  affect  religion, 
by  misrepresenting  approved  authors.  Put  together,  then,  the 
three  grooves  of  the  secular  journals — the  political,  the  social,  and 
the  literary — and  it  is  obvious  that,  either  directly  or  indirectly, 
the  tendency  must  be  injurious  to  the  fourth  groove,  which  is  re- 
ligion treated  only  diplomatically. 

This  whole  subject  of  "  party  organs  "  is  so  difficult,  if  viewed 
ethically,  that  it  would  need  the  wisdom  of  the  Holy  See  to  give 
judgment  on  it.  No  one  denies  that  a  party  organ  must  be  one- 
sided.    It  would  have  no  reason  of  being  if  it  were  not  so.     But, 


The  Tendency  of  English  Journalism.  225 

need  a  party  organ  be  both  unjust  and  ungenerous?  English 
journalism  is  now  worked  on  this  principle:  That  to  prove  his 
case,  at  all  cost,  is  the  duty  of  the  journalist;  not\.Q  prove  what  is 
true,  what  is  just.  "  We  do  not  want  the  truth,"  the  writer  of  a 
leader  seems  to  say  ;  "  what  we  want  is  to  prove  ourselves  right." 
Exactly  as  a  counsel  in  a  court  of  justice  says  all  that  can  possibly 
be  said  for  his  own  side,  and  all  that  can  possibly  be  said  against 
the  other  side ;  so,  a  writer  of  a  leading  article  ignores  every  con- 
sideration but  such  as  may  make  his  view  seem  the  right  one. 
But,  in  a  court  of  justice,  the  jury  hear  both  sides.  In  a  news- 
paper the  readers  read  only  one  side.  And,  since  nine  men  out  of 
ten  read  only  their  party  organs,  they  never  get  to  know  anything 
of  the  other  side.  Here,  then,  is  a  tendency  which  is  positively 
corrupting — to  men  who  have  not  the  strength  of  mind  to  read 
both  sides.  They  who  have  lived  much  in  the  editorial  atmosphere 
— and  writers  of  leading  articles  have  this  experience — know  that 
any  offence  is  pardonable  save  the  "  stultifying"  of  a  newspaper  by 
making  it  unsay  what  it  said  the  day  before.  If  a  wagon-load  of 
evidence  were  to  arrive  at  an  editor's  door,  proving  his  statements 
on  the  previous  day  to  be  all  fibs,  he  would  simply  comment  on 
the  wagon-load  as  "  angry  protests  against  our  statements,  which 
are  obviously  biassed  by  a  strong  party  feeling."  He  has,  of  course, 
no  party  feeling.  And  behind  his  back  stands  the  proprietor  of 
the  newspaper,  who  is  inquiring  about  the  "  increase  in  the  circu- 
lation," and  who  would  rather  his  editor  made  a  hundred  slips  in 
grammar  than  that  he  should  "  stultify  the  paper  "  by  one  apology. 
Papers  are  published,  first,  to  make  money.  Editors  have  to  labor, 
first,  to  please  proprietors.  The  staff  have  to  write,  first,  to  '*  pre- 
serve the  unities  of  the  organ,"  which,  in  plain  truth,  means  to 
shape  conscience  to  diplomacy.  The  best  contributor  is  he  who 
attracts  the  most  customers.  A  free  press  means  the  right  of 
attracting  customers.  Take  away  the  merchandise  out  of  news- ^ 
papers,  and  how  much  would  be  left  of  pure  motive  ? 

In  these  days  not  one  paper  in  twenty  can  manage  to  pay  its 
way  without  advertisements.  But  the  advertisements  depend 
largely  on  the  circulation,  so  that,  to  secure  the  prop  of  the  paper, 
the  first  object  of  the  proprietor  must  be  to  secure  the  popularity 
of  his  advocacy.  Now,  human  nature  must  be  supposed  to  m- 
fluence  even  proprietors.  It  is  not  every  man  who  will  throw  away 
a  thousand  a  year  for  the  lofty  pleasure  of  perfectly  satisfying  his 
own  conscience.  Merchandise  is,  after  all,  but  a  game  of  chess,  in 
which  the  pawns,  which  are  called  '^  our  principles,"  are  meant  to 
cover  the  big  pieces,  which  are  (speaking  proprietorily)  the  profits. 
And  since  a  free  press  was  established,  the  poor  pawns  have  been 
pushed  forward  with  a  splendid  pretence  of  being  the.  important 
VOL.  XIV. — 15 

226  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

pieces  on  the  board,  while,  alas,  the  bishops  and  knights,  the 
castles,  kings  and  queens,  have  been  the  humble  instruments  of 
the  "  balance  "  to  the  proprietors.  The  few  papers  which  have 
been  edited  solely  for  truth's  sake  have  almost  invariably  come  to 
grief.  Such  has  been  the  irony  of  a  "free"  press.  Nor  is  it  wholly  the 
fault  of  the  proprietors.  Readers  of  newspapers  insist  on  having 
what  they  want,  and,  if  they  get  what  they  do  not  want,  they  write 
to  the  manager:  "  Sir,  please  cease  to  send  me  your  paper."  So 
that  readers  make  the  papers  what  they  are.  The  tendency  of 
English  journalists  is  to  gross  unfairness,  because  the  tendency  of 
English  readers  is  to  gross  prejudice. 

But  apart  from  such  general  characteristics,  which  are  common, 
more  or  less,  to  all  journalism,  let  it  be  asked,  what  are  the  present 
tendencies  of  English  newspapers,  in  the  way  of  advocacy  of  one 
extreme  or  another  ?  Politically,  the  tendency  is  to  a  hard  Tory- 
ism, out  of  a  fear  of  the  extreme  sects  of  revolutionists.  Since 
Radicalism  and  Socialism  grew  rampant,  Toryism  has  grown  harder 
and  more  cruel.  The  present  spirit  of  English  journals,  in  regard 
to  Ireland,  is  an  illustration  of  the  reaction  to  wilful  hardness.  Not 
only  are  all  the  morning  papers  save  one,  and  all  the  evening  pa- 
pers save  two,  devoted  to  what  is  understood  by  "  Balfourism," 
but  even  the  Sunday  papers — supposed  to  be  written  for  "  the 
people  " — are,  with  one  exception,  anti-Irish.  The  "  weeklies  " 
are  all  set  in  the  same  direction,  with  only  two  conspicuous  excep- 
tions. The  bitterness  of  English  journalism  against  the  fighters 
for  Irish  liberties  has  had  no  parallel  since  the  days  of  "  No 
Popery."  Here,  then,  is  a  tendency  to  partisanship  which  has  no 
redeeming  feature  of  natural  kindness,  nor  the  faintest  instinct  of 
justice  to  other  peoples.  Ignorance  may  be  a  good  plea  for  the 
multitude;  but  the  upper  and  the  middle  classes  set  their  teeth 
against  the  Irish,  wholly  forgetful  of  the  awful  past  of  Irish  wrongs, 
and  wholly  insensible  to  the  natural  duty  of  reparation.  The  news- 
papers take  this  side,  with  the  majority,  because  their  interests,  for 
the  moment,  seem  to  suggest  it,  and  because  they  fear  that  they 
will  be  suspected  of  Radical  leanings  if  they  venture  to  write  hon- 
estly about  Ireland.  English  journalism  is  unjust  to  the  Irish, 
because  it  is  afraid  of  English  prejudice  and  susceptibility. 

So  that,  politically,  the  tendency  of  English  journalism  is  to 
resist  the  waves  of  democracy  by  being  more  Tory.  This  might 
be  all  very  well  if  it  were  not  an  apparent  probability  that  the  "  one 
man  one  vote  "  principle  will  be  soon  adopted.  But  it  must  seem 
unwise  to  try  to  irritate  those  classes  which,  before  long,  will  have 
increased  political  power,  instead  of  magnanimously  and  chival- 
rously doing  justice,  so  as  tojtake  the  ''reason  of  being"  out  of  revo-  j 
lution.     And  we  may  see  another  example  of  this  stolid  Toryism 


The  Teiidency  of  English  Journalism. 


in  the  attitude  of  the  press  towards  the  House  of  Lords.  Nothincr 
could  be  more  lamentable,  politically,  than  the  obliteration  of  a 
"  second,  revising  chamber."  Yet  all  the  world  recognizes  that 
the  legislative  unfitness  of  at  least  three-quarters  of  the  House  of 
Peers  is  so  manifest  that  custom  alone  could  let  it  stand.  Now  the 
press  will  not  attack  this  (known)  anomaly,  for  fear  of  being  sus- 
pected of  being  Radical.  The  exactly  opposite  course  would  be 
less  Radical.  For,  if  now,  in  times  of  peace,  the  Upper  House 
could  be  reconstituted,  there  would  be  no  fear  of  its  being  pulled 
down  in  times  of  trouble ;  whereas,  should  we  have  our  revolu- 
tion, the  House  of  Lords  would  "  go  first,"  and  the  Throne  would 
be  not  unlikely  to  follow  it.  Here,  then,  is  another  example  of  the 
tendency  of  English  journalism  to  oppose  Radicalism  by  a  fictitious 
warmth  of  Toryism.  Ireland  and  the  House  of  Lords  are  two 
very  good  examples  of  this  tendency  to  immobility  or  stolidity. 

As  to  religion,  what  has  been  said  might  suffice,  save  that  it  is 
desirable  to  notice  more  particularly  the  interest  which  some  jour- 
nalists take  in  skepticism.  A  glance  at  the  British  magazines, 
periodicals  and  reviews,  numbering  about  twelve  hundred  and 
twenty,  and  also  at  the  London  weekly  or  interval  papers,  num- 
bering about  three  hundred  and  ninety,  discloses  a  spirit  of  interest 
in  skepticism  which  is  much  stronger  than  that  of  repugnance  to 
unbelief  Some  of  the  scientific  papers  profess  atheism.  Most  of 
them  look  down  upon  Christian  dogma.  Some  few  are  emphatic 
in  proclaiming  their  theism;  but  the  belief  is  often  qualified  by 
"  natural  religion."  There  is  no  scientific  paper  which  affects  to 
connect  its  science  with  the  profession  of  belief  in  the  Church  of 
England,  perhaps  for  the  simple  reason  that  no  scientist,  no  lo- 
gician, could  connect  certain  truth  with  private  sentiment.  A  belief 
m  Christianity  is  one  thing,  but  a  belief  in  the  Church  of  England 
is  another.  All  that  we  find  in  such  scientific  papers  as  profess  re- 
ligion is  the  assertion  that  creation  manifestly  points  to  a  Creator; 
not,  as  St.  Thomas  shows,  that  the  philosophy  of  Catholicity  is  in 
harmony  with  the  whole  suggestion  of  the  universe.  But  what  is 
the  general  tendency  of  science  papers  ?  Is  it  towards  faith  or  un- 
belief ?  Towards  faith,  inferentially,  yet  chiefly  towards  natural 
religion.  As  to  the  bulk  of  the  interval  papers — weekly,  monthly, 
or  quarterly — they  mostly  ignore  religion  altogether.  Nor  can  we, 
reasonably,  expect  that,  say,  the  class  periodicals,  numbering  eight 
hundred  and  forty-five,  should  combine  a  subject  which  is  outside 
their  province  with  the  interests  of  exceptional  trades.  Indeed,  it 
is  better  that  they  should  leave  it  alone.  They  do  not  pretend, 
like  the  "  popular  "  papers,  to  know  everything.  Our  point  is  that 
the  daily  papers — and  not  a  few  of  the  weeklies — treat  religion  as 
they  treat  politics  or  sociology,  except  that  their  enthusiasm  about 
the  latter  is  not  extended  to  their  discussions  about  the  former. 

228  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

^*The  number  of  people  who  take  the  trouble  to  think  for  them- 
selves is  very  small  indeed,"  as  Mr.  Puff  says,  in  Sheridan's  comedy 
of  "  The  Critic  ";  so  the  journalists  have  to  take  the  trouble  to  think 
for  them,  and  the  operation  is  commonly  performed  in  this  way — 
at  least,  on  the  part  of  the  "  religious  journals"  :  ^'  I  want  you," 
says  the  editor  of  such  a  journal  to  one  of  his  staff,  "  to  write  me 
an  article  on  Ritualism.  Be  careful  to  steer  clear  of  committing 
the  paper  to  any  approval  of  Ritualist  practices  ;  yet,  at  the  same 
time,  do  not  say  a  word  in  discouragement  of  the  party,  because  a 
number  of  our  subscribers  are  Ritualists.  You  might  throw  in 
some  platitudes  about  the  hard-working  Ritualist  clergy,  their  un- 
deniable zeal,  and  all  that  sort  of  thing  ;  but  you  had  better  also 
express  a  general  regret  that  they  do  not  more  consult  their  con- 
gregations as  to  the  acceptability  of  new  doctrines  or  practices. 
You  see  the  line  ?  The  fact  is,  we  went  a  little  too  far  in  our  some- 
what hurriedly-written  leader  of  last  week,  and  I  have  been  deluged 
with  correspondence  in  consequence.  Observe  the  juste  milieu. 
Don't  commit  us." 

And  the  readers  are  mostly  satisfied  with  the  "  admirable  pru- 
dence and  moderate  counsel "  which  the  leader  of  the  following  week 
puts  before  them. 

So  that  we  might  sum  up  the  whole  tendency  of  English  jour- 
nalism— in  its  relations  to  what  may  be  called  religious  views — as 
the  suggesting  to  readers  that  they  should  suggest  to  their  jour- 
nalists the  sort  of  teaching  they  want  to  have  suggested  back  again. 
Reciprocity  is  the  amiable  idea;  but  the  readers  must  begin  first, 
or  the  journalists  cannot  insist  earnestly — with  an  air  of  authority 
— that  the  readers  should  believe  what  they  want  to  believe.  Then, 
when  the  journalist  proceeds  to  lay  down  the  law,  the  readers  are 
delighted  with  his  sagacity,  not  considering  that  he  has  been  in- 
structed to  write  what  he  does  write,  because  it  is  exactly  what 
the  readers  want  to  have.  A  mutual  complimentary  society  is 
what  is  really  established  by  the  proprietor,  the  staff,  and  the 
readers.  It  is  a  harmonious  and  a  successful  arrangement.  Still, 
regarded  from  a  supernatural  point  of  view,  it  is  lacking  in  some 
essentials  of  infallibility. 

As  to  the  future,  a  multiplication  of  such  advocacies  is  all  that 
we  have  reason  to  expect.  Meanwhile,  Catholic  newspapers  are 
on  the  increase.  What  is  wanted  is  a  Catholic  daily  paper,  and 
also  a  Catholic  quarterly  review.  It  is  certainly  high  time  that 
English  Catholics  had  a  quarterly  review  of  their  own.  Three  years 
ago  a  private  gentleman  tried  to  start  one,  but  he  met  with  ob- 
stacles which  tempered  his  enthusiasm.  In  the  same  spirit,  ten 
years  ago,  a  private  gentleman  tried  to  start  a  London  Catholic 
daily  paper,  but  only  half  of  the  necessary  funds  could  be  guaran- 

A  New  Biographer  of  otir  Loi^d.  229 

teed.  It  is  lamentable  that  political  bias  is  so  strong  among  English 
Catholics  that  the  Irish  question  alone  fatally  divides  them.  A 
daily  paper,  which  should  advocate  Irish  liberties,  would  not  be 
patronized  by  a  large  section  of  English  Catholics. 

On  religion  alone  would  English  Catholics  be  united;  and  it  is 
just  exactly  on  that  one  subject  that  no  existing  daily  paper  ever 
sounds  the  true  note  of  Catholicity,  or  even  affects  to  feel  so  much 
as  scholarly  interest. 


UNDER  the  enticing  title,  "The  Boyhood  of  Christ,"^  appears 
one  of  the  handsomest  and  best  printed  and  illustrated  books, 
perhaps,  ever  seen  in  this  country.  Not  large  in  size — it  consists  only 
of  loi  pages — but  magnificently  gotten  up,  and  accompanied  with 
thirteen  exquisite  plates,  most  of  them  splendid  copies  from  paint- 
ings by  the  great  masters,  the  book  has  been  intended — so  at  least 
it  appears — to  serve  as  a  holiday  present  of  the  most  attractive 
character,  and  reach,  if  it  were  possible,  every  Christian  home, 
not  only  in  this  land,  but  in  every  other  where  the  English  lan- 
guage is  understood  or  spoken.  What  Christian  mother,  in  coming 
across  a  book  of  this  character,  on  such  a  sweet  and  interesting 
subject,  suggestive  of  the  tenderest  as  well  as  most  poetical  feel- 
ings of  the  heart,  and  so  beautiful  and  artistic  in  its  external  form, 
would  not  be  at  once  inclined  to  give  to  it  a  prominent  position 
among  the  choicest  ornaments  of  her  parlor  ?  And  what  man,  or 
woman,  whether  single  or  married,  whether  advanced  in  age  or 
still  in  the  prime  of  life,  who  admires  what  is  beautiful  and  feels 
towards  a  child,  even  if  that  child  is  not  our  Divine  Lord,  that 
profound  reverence,  as  well  as  sympathy,  which  innocence  and 
purity  inspire  at  all  times  and  force  themselves  into  our  hearts, 
could  resist  the  temptation  of  bringing  to  his  wife,  or  to  a  beloved 
mother,  or  daughter,  or  sister,  such  an  interesting  and  refined 
present  as  the  book  now  referred  to  might  apparently  constitute  ? 
And  then,  if  it  should  happen  for  the  looker-on  to  turn  the  title 
page  and  read  the  dedication,  "  To  the  soul  of  my  mother,"  who 

1   The  Boyhood  of  Christ,  by  Lew  Wallace,  author  of  Ben  Hur  and  The  Fair  God, 

230  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

could  resist  the  temptation   of  taking  with   him  the  book   and 
anticipating  a  noble,  elevating  and  purifying  enjoyment? 

True  it  is  that  at  once  something  in  the  title  page  itself  might 
be  found  capable,  if  not  of  chilling  the  blood  of  the  reader,  even  if 
he  is  not  in  any  way  pious,  at  least  of  causing  him  to  desire  that 
such  a  thing  would  have  been  omitted.  Why  did  the  author  of 
"  The  Boyhood  of  Christ "  add  to  his  name  that  he  was  also  the 
author  of  *' Ben  Plur"  and  "The  Fair  God"?  Did  he  intend  to 
forewarn  that  he  was  a  writer  of  fiction  and  that  *^  The  Boyhood  of 
Christ "  was  to  be  written  also  under  the  rules  pertaining  to  com- 
positions of  that  kind,  and  with  no  other  sentiment  than  the  one 
inspiring  a  more  or  less  sensational  novel  ?  Could  he  have  for- 
gotten so  completely  the  well-admitted  maxim,  proclaimed  even 
by  heathens,  that  "  holy  things  must  be  treated  holily," — Sa7tcta 
sancte  tractanda  ? 

Mr.  Wallace's  heart  made  him  feel  the  necessity  to  explain  to 
the  public  why  he  had  written  this  book.  People  would  ask,  or 
wonder,  he  says,  why  he,  who  is  "  neither  minister  of  the  Gospel, 
nor  theologian,  nor  churchman,"  had  "  presumed "  to  give  this 
work  to  the  public.  "  It  pleases  him,"  he  says,  "  to  answer  respect- 
fully "  that  he  did  so  "  to  fix  an  impression  distinctly  in  his  mind." 
And  this  impression  was  that  "the  Jesus  Christ  in  whom  he 
believes  was,  in  all  the  stages  of  his  age,  a  human  being,"  and 
that  *'  his  divinity  was  the  Spirit  within  him,  and  the  Spirit  was 

Whatever  might  be  said  of  this  reason  and  of  its  soundness  both 
theologically  and  philosophically,  it  must  be  taken  for  granted  that 
for  the  author  at  least  it  is  satisfactory.  It  is  not,  besides,  in  any 
form  or  manner,  the  subject  of  our  inquiry. 

The  plan  of  the  book  is  certainly  calculated  to  inspire  interest. 
An  old  man,  Uncle  Midas,  who  had  seen  the  world,  and  been  a 
lawyer  and  a  soldier,  an  author  and  a  traveller,  and  had  dabbled 
in  art,  diplomacy  and  politics, — exceedingly  refined  in  his  manners, 
— who  had  visited  Turkey  and  Palestine,  and  had,  after  reaching 
his  sixty-fifth  year,  retired  to  live  with  ease  and  comfort,  sur- 
rounded by  his  books  and  his  mementoes,  is  visited  a  Christmas 
eve  by  some  young  people,  who  rather  like  to  hear  him  talking 
than  abandoning  themselves  to  the  pleasures  of  dancing,  and  sug- 
gest as  an  appropriate  subject  of  the  conference  the  boyhood  of 

Uncle  Midas  had  his  library,  where  the  conversation  passed, 
near  a  greenhouse  where  he  treasured  with  care  a  palm  tree  which 
the  monks  of  Mar  Saabe  had  given  him,  a  vine  which  he  had 
brought  from  a  garden  near  the  walls  of  Jerusalem,  and  an  oak 
from   Mamre.      Flowers    suggested  to  him   only  their  transient 

A  New  Biographer  of  our  Lord.  23 1 

glory  and  beauty.  But  these  mementoes  and  his  books  helped 
him  to  keep  his  mind  well  balanced  and  contented. 

Nan  and  Puss  are  two  girls,  just  verging  on  womanhood,  who 
delight  in  listening  to  the  old  man,  and  desert  the  ball-room  to 
come  to  his  study.  "  We  have  come  to  hear  you  talk,"  says  one 
of  them,  with  the  charming  but  somewhat  abrupt  frankness  natu- 
ral to  her  age.  And  while  the  strains  of  the  music  occasionally 
reach  the  room,  as  if  recalling  them,  although  in  vain,  to  the 
pleasures  which  they  have  foregone  for  the  moment,  the  subject  of 
the  boyhood  of  Christ  is  suggested  by  them. 

"  It  is  so  hard,"  says  Puss,  "  to  think  of  our  Lord  as  a  boy. 
I  mean  to  say,"  she  adds,  "to  think  of  Him  running,  jumping, 
playing  marbles,  flying  kites,  spinning  tops  and  going  about  all 
day  on  mischiefs,  such  as  throwing  stones  and  robbing  birds' 

And  to  this  the  old  man  whom  the  subject  suggested  gives 
pleasure,  answers  with  a  grave  smile :  ^'  Rest,  you  little  friend,  if 
the  Nazarene  lads  of  his  day  had  tops,  marbles  and  kites, — I  am 
not  sure  they  had, — I  would  prefer  to  believe  he  found  enjoyment 
in  them." 

Shortly  afterwards  a  lad,  named  John,  came  to  join  the  listeners  ; 
and  later  on  some  other  people,  of  about  the  same  age,  also 
escaped  from  the  dancing-hall  and  swelled  the  attentive  audience. 

All  of  this  seems,  no  doubt,  exceedingly  interesting.  An  old 
man,  on  Christmas  eve,  talking  of  the  Child  Jesus  to  children  who 
are  anxious  to  know  all  about  the  boyhood  of  the  Redeemer,  cer- 
tainly affords  a  subject  for  a  most  charming  composition,  whether 
literary  or  in  painting.  Purity,  sanctity,  innocence,  beauty  in  its 
most  sympathetic  and  charming  form,  had  necessarily  to  be  the 
canvas  or  the  background  upon  which  Uncle  Midas  was  called 
to  put,  as  if  it  were  in  contact,  the  Child  who  was  God  with  the 
children  born  of  men,  who  were  anxious  to  know  Him.  What  a 
great  opportunity  for  the  elevation  of  minds,  for  the  infusion  of 
religious  feelings,  for  promoting  attachment  to  divine  things,  for 
rendering  the  Church  and  her  teachings  amiable  and  interesting! 

But,  alas,  how  distant  Mr.  Wallace  has  been  from  attaining 
these  results  ! 

This  book,  besides  being  disappointing  to  the  last  extreme,  is  a 
living  and  perpetual  contradiction  of  its  own  purposes  and  ideas. 
It  was  conceived,  as  the  author  says,  to  fix  distinctly  in  his  mind 
that  our  Lord  was,  in  all  the  stages  of  His  life,  a  human  being— 
and  when  Puss  says  to  Uncle  Midas  that  it  is  hard  for  her  to  think 
of  our  Lord  as  a  boy,  as  if  He  had  been  like  the  other  boys,  sons 
of  men,  he  said,  as  we  have  seen,  that  he  would  prefer  to  believe 

232  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

that  the  Child  Jesus  found  enjoyment  in  the  juvenile  amusements 
and  plays  of  all  times  and  places. 

As  Puss,  astonished,  as  it  seems,  by  the  idea  suggested  by  the 
old  man,  exclaimed  almost  with  reproach,  "  Oh,  Uncle  Midas  ! '' 
as  meaning,  how  is  it  possible  that  a  man  of  his  good  sense  and 
judgment  could  set  forth  such  a  strange  proposition,  Uncle  Midas 
became  serious;  his  "smile  vanished,"  and  he  answers  the  girl: 
"  I  see  that  you  are  going  the  way  of  the  many ;  by  and  by  you 
will  not  be  able  to  think  of  our  Lord  as  a  man  !  " 

And  nevertheless,  when  all  the  pages  are  read,  when  the  talk 
of  Uncle  Midas  is  finished — when  the  whole  story  is  told — the 
conclusion  which  is  reached  is  the  absolute  and  complete  denial 
of  the  idea  that  apparently  pervades  the  book,  and  seemed  to  be 
paramount  in  Uncle  Midas's  mind.  The  conclusion  is  that  "  Christ 
had  no  boyhood  at  all."  The  book  ends  by  a  request,  on  the  part 
of  Uncle  Midas,  to  be  pardoned  by  his  audience  for  his  attempt 
to  convince  them;  that,  in  fact,  our  Lord  was  never  a  boy. 

And,  indeed,  such  pardon  is  necessary,  not  only  for  the  strange 
inconsistency  between  the  premises  and  the  conclusion  based  upon 
them,  but  for  the  spirit  of  disguised,  although,  perhaps,  uninten- 
tional, irreverence  which  shows  itself  through  the  narrative. 

Uncle  Midas  speaks  of  his  attachment  to  Christ  because  of  His 
human  nature.  God  is  so  far  beyond  his  comprehension  that  he 
gives  up  in  despair.  But  for  Christ,  how  different  his  feelings  are. 
He  is  His  friend.  His  brother;  Uncle  Midas  could  have  borne  to 
look  into  His  face.  He  could  have  even  laid  his  head  fearlessly 
upon  His  breast.  And  as  he  finds  it  amazing  that  the  "  childhood 
of  such  a  man  should  be  so  beggarly  of  authentic  incident,"  he 
entertains  his  audience,  and  answers  to  their  questions,  by  reading 
from  a  book  which  he  keeps  in  his  library  simply  as  a  monument 
of  the  capability  to  believe  even  absurd  things  which  in  his  judg- 
ment exists  in  man.  This  book,  which  he  alleges  to  be  the  only 
one  on  the  subject,  though  there  is  another,  he  says,  not  worthy 
to  be  mentioned,  for  its  extreme  inferiority,  is  the  one  which  he 
calls  "The  First  Gospel  of  the  Infancy  of  Jesus  Christ,"  and 
which  he  hastens  to  say  that  he  dislikes  because  the  stories  that 
it  tells  "  detract  from  the  exceeding  holiness  of  the  personages 
of  whom  they  are  told,"  and  because  they  are  "trifling  and 

But  as  the  children  crowded  around  him  are  anxious  to  hear 
what  is  said  in  that  book,  Uncle  Midas  selects  carefully  what  he 
can  find  in  it  more  readily  admitting  of  stern  criticism,  and  even 
caricature,  and  tries  to  impress  upon  the  minds  of  his  listeners  the 
wrong  idea  that  the  pious  author  of  the  "Book  of  the  Miracles  of 
our  Saviour,  and  Lord,  and  Teacher,  Jesus  Christ,  which  is  called 

A  New  Biographer  of  our  Lord,  233 

the  Gospel  of  the  Infancy,"  as  the  work  is  really  named,  represents 
the  Holy  Family  as  seeking  for  entertainments,  being  given  pres- 
ents, and  our  Blessed  Lady  as  a  "  showwoman  of  the  miracu- 
lous powers  of  her  Son,"  whom  "  she  exhibits  in  the  towns  along 
the  way  "  during  her  pilgrimage  to  Egypt. 

The  circumstance  must  perhaps  be  noticed,  that  in  reaching  this 
point,  and  when,  indeed,  the  real  subject  of  the  boyhood  of  our 
Lord,  wdth  which  the  book  is  intended  to  deal,  begins  to  be  dis- 
cussed, no  less  than  73  pages  out  of  the  loi  which  the  whole  work 
contains  have  been  already  filled  with  preliminary  remarks  and  a 
mise  en  scene. 

The  tales  of  devils  cast  out  only  by  the  contact  with  linen 
belonging  to  the  infant  Saviour,  which  His  blessed  Mother  had 
washed  and  hung  somewhere  to  be  dried ;  and  the  story  of  the 
robbers  whom  the  legend  says  the  holy  travelers  met  after  they 
reached  Egypt;  and  that  of  the  idols  which  fell  down  with  a 
crash  at  the  simple  approach  of  the  Child-God  to  the  magnificent 
temples  where  they  were  worshipped  ;  and  that  of  St.  Joseph  being 
a  bad  carpenter,  and  that  our  Lord  often  came  to  his  assistance, 
to  correct  his  errors  in  his  measurements,  or  straighten  properly 
what  he  had  done  crookedly  or  imperfectly,  are  all  picked  up  and 
related  isolatedly,  deprived  of  the  charms  of  the  oriental  poetry 
with  which  they  were  adorned,  and,  more  than  this,  stripped  wholly 
of  the  pious  and  reverent  spirit  with  which  they  were  written  and 
have  been  preserved  for  centuries,  not  only  in  the  eastern  countries, 
but  everywhere  else — Uncle  Midas's  intention  having  been,  appa- 
rently, to  draw  from  his  listeners  emphatic  exclamations  of  sur- 
prise and  even  of  disgust,  and,  perhaps,  scandal,  as  if  something 
blasphemous,  or  utterly  shocking  in  some  other  respect,  had 
been  uttered  in  their  presence. 

What  a  great  injustice,  however,  he  did  to  this  book,  and  to 
the  various  others  which  he  did  not  mention,  or  did  not  know  of, 
which  relate  to  this  subject ! 

The  "  Gospel  of  the  Infancy,"  copies  of  which  in  manuscript,  in 
Arabic,  and  in  Syriac,  are  preserved  in  the  library  of  the  Vatican  at 
Rome  and  in  the  National  Library  at  Paris,  and  which  has  been 
printed  in  the  two  languages  aforesaid,  and  in  most,  if  not  all,  the 
modern  languages,  was  originally  believed,  by  the  people  among 
whom  it  appeared,  to  have  been  written  by  St.  Peter,  upon  material 
furnished  him  by  the  Blessed  Virgin.  Probably  in  its  present  form 
it  was  made  up  by  some  Nestorian  writer ;  which  accoun-ts,  among 
other  things,  for  the  great  favor  that  it  always  enjoyed  among  the 
followers  of  Nestorianism.  It  was  natural  that  the  believers,  not 
only  in  the  two  natures  of  our  Lord  and  Saviour,  but  in  the  exist- 
ence in  Him  of  two  persons,  distinctly  different,  one  from  the  other. 

234  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

would  have  tried  to  treasure  as  many  traditions  as  they  could  find 
among  the  people,  which  related  directly  to  the  childhood  of 
Christ.  Its  popularity,  especially  in  Egypt,  where  most  of  the 
facts  that  it  narrates  took  place,  has  been  maintained  for  centuries 
perfectly  unabated.  It  has  still  great  credit  among  the  Copts,  who 
possess,  in  addition  to  this  book,  a  great  number  of  others,  dwelling 
upon  the  same  subject,  one  of  which  is  a  "  History  of  the  Flight 
into  Egypt,"  falsely  attributed  to  Theophilus  of  Alexandria. 

The  works  above  cited,  and  the  "  History  of  Joseph  the  Car- 
penter," the  "  Protoevangelion  of  James  the  Less,"  the  "  Gospel  of 
Thomas  the  Israelite,  on  the  things  done  by  the  Lord  when  still 
an  Infant,"  the  "  Gospel  of  the  Nativity  of  Saint  Mary,"  the  "  Gos- 
pel of  the  Nativity  of  Mary,  and  of  the  Infancy  of  the  Saviour," 
and  several  others,  are  certainly  interesting  monuments,  which 
irrefutably  testify  to  the  movements  of  the  human  mind  at  a  period 
of  history  exceedingly  worthy  of  attention.  They  are  not  monu- 
ments, as  Uncle  Midas  thought,  of  that  kind  of  imbecile,  indis- 
criminate aptness  to  believe  all  things,  no  matter  how  absurd, 
which  he  ascribes  to  mankind  ;  but  monuments  of  literature,  as  well 
as  of  pious  and  religious  feeling,  wherein  the  charms  of  poetry 
have  been  lavishly  poured  down,  and  wherein  the  purest  intention 
and  good  faith  had  been  displayed  at  all  parts. 

In  these  legends  of  the  Evangelic  times,  always  shining  with 
candor  and  good  intention,  where  traditions  dear  to  the  people 
have  been  carefully  preserved,  the  soul  and  life  of  the  Christian 
society  of  the  day  are  to  be  found  portrayed.  They  were  destined 
for  the  family  circle,  to  be  narrated  at  home,  under  the  tent,  at  the 
foot  of  the  palm-trees,  where  the  caravan  halted  ;  and  a  good  picture 
of  the  popular  customs  of  the  primitive  Church  is  preserved  by  them. 
They  were  the  popular  poems  of  the  first  neophytes  of  the  new 
worship  ;  and  faith  and  imagination  vied  with  each  other  to  render 
them  interesting  and  beautiful.  The  Church,  in  her  wisdom,  has 
not  admitted  them  as  canonical,  but  recognized,  with  reason,  that 
they  lack  authenticity ;  but  her  action  has  stopped  at  this  point,  no 
doctrine  against  the  faith  having  been  found  in  them.  Their  in- 
fluence, on  the  other  hand,  has  been  extraordinary,  because  for 
many  centuries  they  have  contributed  powerfully  and  directly  to 
the  development  of  poetry  and  the  fine  arts.  The  epic  and  dra- 
matic art  of  the  Middle  Ages,  as  well  as  painting  and  sculpture, 
have  largely  drawn  from  these  legends.  Christian  art  owes  to 
them  its  origin ;  and  as  Balmez  has  justly  remarked,  *'  In  whatever 
manner  we  may  judge  of  them,  and  even  if  we  attempt  to  alto- 
gether set  them  aside  as  mere  illusions,  the  fact  remains  that  they 
are  harmless,  and  have  contributed  immensely  to  the  glories  of 
art,  the  cultivation  of  sentiment,  and  the  civilization  of  the  world." 

A  Nciv  Biographer  of  our  Lord,  235 

It  would  have  been,  no  doubt,  better  for  Uncle  Midas  to  entertain 
his  innocent,  attentive  listeners  with  stories  like  the  ones  still  told 
to  the  travelers  in  Egypt,  about  the  miracles  and  innocent  deport- 
ment of  the  Child-God,  than  to  plant  into  their  souls,  prematurely, 
the  spirit  of  doubt  and  adverse  criticism,  if  not  a  kind  of  Puritanic 
horror  of  any  mild  form  or  expression  of  human  nature. 

People  who  have  visited  Cairo,  or  occupied  themselves  with 
these  subjects,  remember  a  small  stream  of  fresh,  delicious  water 
which  flows  in  the  vicinity  of  that  city,  and  is  bordered  with  fra- 
grant balm  shrubs.  The  water  elsewhere  in  that  territory  is  salty 
and  bitter.  The  shrubs  cannot  thrive  except  on  the  particular 
spot  which  the  privileged  stream  can  wash.  In  answer  to  any 
questions  about  the  reasons  of  this  striking  fact,  they  will  explain  to 
you  the  same  now  as  many  centuries  ago,  that  Mary  washed  at  that 
spring  the  clothing  of  her  Divine  Son,  that  the  water  became  then 
purified  and  wholesome,  and  that  wherever  a  drop  of  it  fell  upon 
the  ground  a  balm-tree  sprang  up  at  once,  fragrant  and  luxurious. 

They  will  tell  you,  also,  with  that  richness  of  imagination  that 
is  characteristic  of  eastern  people,  why  a  branch  of  the  palm-tree 
has  been  chosen,  as  if  by  common  consent  of  the  human  race,  to 
symbolize  triumph  or  victory.  In  a  fatiguing  journey  through  the 
desert,  a  palm-tree  having  been  seen  at  a  distance,  Mary  suggested 
to  Joseph,  "  Let  us  repose  a  little  under  its  shade  " ;  and  Mary, 
having  sat  down,  cast  a  glance  at  the  top  of  the  palm-tree,  and  saw 
that  it  was  loaded  with  fruits ;  and  she  said  to  Joseph,  "  My  wish 
should  be,  if  possible,  to  have  one  of  those  fruits."  And  then  the 
child,  Jesus,  who  was  in  the  arms  of  the  Virgin  Mary,  said  to  the 
palm-tree  :  "  Tree,  bend  down  thy  crown,  and  give  my  mother  thy 
fruits."  And  then,  at  His  voice,  the  palm-tree  inclined  its  head 
until  it  touched  the  feet  of  Mary ;  and  Mary  collected  as  much  of 

the  fruit  as  she  wanted And  Jesus  said  (on  the  following 

day) :  "  I  say  to  thee,  palm-tree,  ....  and  I  grant  thee  as  a 
blessing,  that  of  all  who  shall  conquer  in  the  battles  of  faith,  it 
shall  be  said  forever,  *  You  have  obtained  the  palm  of  victory.'  " — 
(History  of  the  Nativity  of  Mary  and  the  Infancy  of  the  Saviour.) 

Stories  of  this  kind  at  Christmas  eve  might  have  been  more  edi- 
fying, and  perhaps  more  acceptable,  to  Uncle  Midas's  audience 
than  his  stern  criticisms,  and  his  attempt,  as  he  himself  calls  it,  to 
show  that  our  Lord,  although  so  extremely  a  man,  as  he  said,  had 
had  no  boyhood. 

He  was  well  aware,  nevertheless,  that  this  peculiar- point  of 
view  was  at  least  novel.  "  Opinion  commonly  held,  he  said,  that 
the  youth  of  our  Lord  ran  on  in  a  course  very  much  like  that  of 
the  generality  of  poor  Jewish  children."  But  as  Puss  remarked 
impulsively,  "with   a  show  of  indignation,"  that  she  could  not 

236  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

believe  such  a  thing,  Uncle  Midas  looked  at  her  "  benignantly," 
and  said,  '*  Nor  can  I,  either." 

Another  novel  feature  of  Uncle  Midas's  narrative  is  the  effort 
that  he  made  to  destroy  the  idea,  thus  far  prevailing,  that  the 
Holy  Family  was  poor,  and  that  St.  Joseph  had  to  rely  upon  his 
work  as  a  carpenter  for  the  support  of  his  household. 

"  They  say,"  he  went  on,  "  that  Joseph,  to  whom  as  a  child  our 
Lord  was  subject,  was  a  carpenter  who  plied  only  the  humbler 
branches  of  the  trade,  and  that  Mary,  his  wife,  spun  the  flax  and 
wool  for  the  family,  and  was  a  housewife.  These  are  the  circum- 
stances chiefly  relied  upon,"  he  continues,  "  to  support  the  theory 
that  the  condition  of  the  child  was  poverty.  Now,  while  I  admit 
the  circumstances,  I  deny  the  conclusion.  That  Joseph  was  a  car- 
penter signifies  nothing,  as  the  law  required  every  Israelite,  rich  or 
poor,  to  follow  some  occupation.  Now,  was  it  not  written  of  the 
exemplar  of  all  the  mothers  in  Israel,  'she  looketh  to  the  way  of 
her  household,  and  eateth  not  the  bread  of  idleness  ?'  And  if  we 
may  give  heed  to  accounts  not  purely  scriptural,  Mary  owned  the 
house  in  Nazareth  in  which  the  family  dwelt;  but,  conforming  to 
the  Scriptures,  it  is  to  be  remembered  that  amongst  the  gifts  of  the 
Magi  there  was  gold,  and  I  please  myself  thinking  that  there  was 
enough  of  it  to  support  the  Holy  Family  while  it  was  in  Egypt 

and  afterwards  in  Nazareth As  to  the  social  position  of  the 

family,  it  is  enough  to  remember  that,  besides  being  a  just  man, 
Joseph  was  a  lineal  descendant  of  David  the  king." 

From  these  premises  Uncle  Midas  drew  the  conclusion  that  the 
Holy  Family  was  "  neither  rich  nor  poor,"  that  its  condition  was 
"  comfortable,"  "  exactly  the  condition  to  allow  our  Saviour  a  mar- 
ginal time  in  which  to  taste  something  of  natural  boyish  freedom, 
....  to  have  little  playmates,  run  races  with  the  youngest  of  the 
flock,  deck  himself  from  the  anemone-beds  on  the  hills,  and  watch 
the  clouds  form  slowly  about  the  summit  of  Mount  Hermon." 

If  the  view  thus  presented  were  historically  correct,  the  world 
must  have  remained  for  nineteen  centuries  under  a  permanent 
cloud  of  error  and  misrepresentation.  The  lesson  which  the 
always  taken-for-granted  condition  of  poverty,  and  dependence 
upon  manual  labor,  of  the  Holy  Family  has  taught  to  the  human 
race,  and  has  so  efficiently  contributed  to  alleviate  social  evils  and 
render  the  burdens  of  the  unfortunate  lighter  or  more  supportable, 
would  henceforth  be  lost  and  unwarranted. 

Fortunately,  neither  the  unchanged  and  universal  tradition  of 
mankind,  nor  historical  monuments  of  irrefutable  character,  can 
allow  the  subversive  views  of  Uncle  Midas,  upon  the  supposed 
"  comfortable  "  position  of  the  Holy  Family,  to  be  entertained  for 
a  moment.     So  well  settled  the  contrary  assertion  proves  to  be, 

A  New  Biographer  of  our  Lord,  237 

that  even  Protestant  writers,  and  among  them  men  of  such  immense 
learning  and  information  as  Alfred  Edersheim,  author  of  "The  Life 
and  Times  of  Jesus  the  Messiah,"  not  certainly  well  disposed  either 
in  favor  of  our  Church  or  in  favor  of  the  legends  above  referred  to, 
and  so  severely  criticised  by  Uncle  Midas,  have  not  hesitated  to 
maintain  it  boldly  and  squarely.  "  At  the  time  of  their  betrothal," 
says  Edersheim,  "alike  Joseph  and  Mary  were  extremely  poor,  as 
appears,  not  indeed  from  his  being  a  carpenter,  since  a  trade  was 
regarded  as  almost  a  religious  duty,  but  from  the  offering  at  the 
presentation  of  Jesus  in  the  Temple." 

According  to  the  law  (Leviticus,  chapter  xii.,  v.  6),  the  said  offering 
should  consist,  under  ordinary  circumstances,  of  a  lamb  one  year  old 
for  a  burnt-offering,  and  a  turtle-dove  for  a  sin-offering («^w^;/^  anni- 
culuni  in  holocaustwn  et  pulhmi  cohwibce,  sive  peccato)  ; 
but  when  the  mother  was  not  able  to  get  the  lamb— which,  like  all 
other  offerings,  could  be  bought  at  the  Temple— then  the  offering 
should  be  two  turtle-doves,  or  two  young  pigeons,  one  for  the 
burnt-offering  and  the  other  for  the  sin-offering.  (Quod  si  non  in- 
venerit  munus  ejus,  nee  potuerit  offerre  agnum,  sumet  ducs  turtures, 
vel  duos  pullos  columbarum,  iinum  in  holocaustum,  et  alteruin  pro 
peccato.     Lev.  xii.,  8.) 

And  St.  Luke  says  explicitly  (chapter  ii.,  v.  24)  that  the  offering 
of  the  Blessed  Virgin,  in  presenting  her  Divine  Son  at  the  Temple, 
was,  according  to  the  latter  provision,  a  pair  of  turtle-doves  or  two 
young  pigeons. 

Tertullian  says  that  Mary  earned  her  livelihood  by  working  ; 
and  Celsus,  in  the  second  century,  said  that  Mary  was  a  woman 
who  had  lived  by  the  work  of  her  hands. 

The  general  tradition  of  mankind,  and  the  expression  given  to 
it  by  art,  is,  and  has  been  at  all  times,  that  St.  Joseph  brought  up 
the  Divine  Child  as  a  carpenter,  and  that  Jesus  exercised  the  craft 
of  his  foster-father.  This  touching  and  familiar  aspect  of  the  life 
of  our  Saviour,  as  Mrs.  Jameson  says  (Legends  of  the  Madonna), 
is  speciall}^  treated  in  pictures  painted  for  private  oratories,  and  in 
prints  prepared  for  distribution  among  the  people,  and  became 
specially  popular  during  the  religious  reaction  of  the  seventeenth 
century.  "  The  greatest  and  wisest  Being  who  ever  trod  the  earth 
was  thus  represented,  in  the  eyes  of  the  poor  artificer,  as  ennobling 
and  sanctifying  labor  and  toil ;  and  the  quiet,  domestic  duties  and 
affections  were  here  elevated  and  hallowed  by  religious  associa- 
tions, and  adorned  by  all  the  graces  of  art.  Even  when  the  ar- 
tistic treatment  was  not  first-rate, still,  if  the  sentiment  and 

significance  were  but  intelligible  to  those  especially  addressed,  the 
purpose  was  accomplished,  and  the  effect  must  have  been  good." 

Had  Uncle  Midas  in  his  library  that  pretty  little  book  of  Mrs. 

238  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

Jameson's,  which  has  just  been  cited,  he  might  have  read  to 
his  young  visitors  the  beautiful  description  of  a  set  of  twelve 
prints  executed  in  the  Netherlands,  exhibiting  a  sort  of  his- 
tory of  the  childhood  of  our  Lord,  and  His  training  under  the  eye 
of  His  mother,  which  is  there  made.  This  set  of  prints  has  for  its 
title  Jesu  Christi  Dei  Domini  Salvatoris  nostri  Infantia^  and  rep- 
resents different  domestic  scenes  highly  interesting.  In  one  of 
them  St.  Joseph  is  working  as  a  carpenter,  the  Blessed  Virgin  is 
measuring  linen,  and  the  Divine  Child  blowing  soap-bubbles.  In 
another  the  Blessed  Virgin  is  reeling  off  a  skein  of  thread,  St. 
Joseph  preparing  a  plank,  and  Jesus,  assisted  by  two  angels,  pick- 
ing up  the  chips.  In  another  St.  Joseph  is  building  up  the  frame- 
work of  a  house,  and  Jesus  boring  a  hole  with  a  large  gimlet, 
while  the  Blessed  Virgin  is  winding  thread. 

St.  Justin,  the  Martyr,  mentions,  as  a  tradition  of  his  time,  that 
our  Lord  assisted  St.  Joseph  in  making  yokes  and  ploughs.  And 
St.  Bonaventure  not  only  describes  the  Blessed  Virgin  as  a  pattern 
of  female  industry,  but  alludes  particularly  to  the  "  legend  of  the 
distaff,"  and  mentions  a  tradition  that,  when  in  Egypt  the  Holy 
Family  was  in  extreme  poverty,  and  almost  compelled  to  beg. 

The  fact  that  the  Magi  made  an  offering  of  gold,  does  not  prove 
that  this  gold  was  enough  to  support  the  whole  family  in  Egypt, 
and  also  in  Nazareth,  as  Uncle  Midas  was  pleased  to  hope;  and 
the  fact  that  St.  Joseph  was  a  lineal  descendant  of  David  the  king 
is  not  sufficient  evidence  that  he  enjoyed  the  *'  comfortable"  po- 
sition in  life  which  is  ascribed  to  him.  St.  Joseph  was,  no  doubt, 
a  patrician,  as  Abbe  Orsini  calls  him;  but  as  the  same  eminent 
writer  says  ("  Life  of  the  Blessed  Virgin,"  chapter  vii.),  his  fortune,  if 
any  had  ever  been  in  his  family,  "  had  been  absorbed  by  the  politi- 
cal revolutions  and  religious  wars  of  Judea,  as  a  drop  of  rain  is 
swallowed  in  the  sea,  leaving  him  only  his  tools  and  his  arms  for 

When  one  of  Uncle  Midas's  young  visitors  asked  him  whether 
our  Lord  "  did  not  play  as  other  children,"  and  whether  He  "  did 
go  to  school,"  the  old  gentleman  answered  that  "  Jesus  was  pre- 
ternaturally  serious,"  and  that,  "  if  Nazareth  had  a  school,  and  the 
better  opinion  is  that  the  village  was  not  so  favored,  it  is  to  be  kept 
in  mind  that  scholars  could  not  be  admitted  before  the  age  of  six, 
and  that  all  instruction  was  limited  to  the  law,  and  entirely  oral." 

With  due  respect  to  the  speaker,  it  can  be  stated  positively  that 
not  one  of  these  assertions  is  supported  by  evidence.  The  assump- 
tion that  the  Divine  Child,  the  child  par  excellence,  as  might  be  said, 
the  most  perfect,  and  therefore  the  most  lovely  and  charming  type 
of  childhood,  was  nevertheless  "  preternaturally  serious,"  involves 
a  contradiction  of  principles  which  is  fatal  to  it.     Its  mere  enuncia- 

A  New  Biographer  of  our  Lord,  2ig 

tion  makes  it  fall  to  the  ground.  And  the  ideas  as  to  schools,  and 
the  education  at  Palestine  at  the  time  of  the  boyhood  of  our  Lord, 
and  the  standing  of  Nazareth  as  far  as  learning  and  civilization  are 
concerned,  which  Uncle  Midas  conveyed  to  his  listeners,  do  not 
bear,  either,  too  close  examination. 

Nazareth,  as  Edersheim  writes,  although  it  might  seem  with- 
drawn from  the  world  in  its  enclosure  of  mountains,  must  not  be 
thought  of  as  a  lonely  village,  reached  only  by  faint  echoes  of 
what  roused  the  land  beyond.  The  great  interests  which  stirred 
the  land  constantly  met  there.  One  of  the  great  commercial  routes 
of  the  world  at  that  time  led  through  Nazareth,  and  men  of  all 
nations,  busy  with  another  life  than  that  of  Israel,  would  appear 
in  its  streets,  and  through  them  thoughts,  associations,  and  hopes 
connected  with  the  great  outside  world  be  stirred. 

On  the  other  hand,  Nazareth,  was  also  one  of  the  great  centres 
of  Jewish  temple  life,  or  priest  centres,  where  the  priests  of  the 
"  course"  which  was  to  be  on  duty  at  the  temple  usually  assem- 
bled in  preparation  for  their  sacred  functions.  "A  double  signifi- 
cance, says  the  learned  writer  above  named,  attached  therefore  to 
Nazareth,  since  through  it  passed  alike  those  who  carried  on  the 
traffic  of  the  world,  and  those  who  ministered  in  the  temple." 

To  say,  or  think,  that  this  village  was  not  favored  with  what  was 
so  common,  and  so  well  regulated,  as  schools  were  in  Judea,  is,  to 
say  the  least,  unfounded.  The  regular  instruction  of  every  child 
commenced  there  wath  the  fifth  or  sixth  year  of  his  age.  Every 
one  of  them  was  sent  to  the  school.  Schools  were  established  in 
every  town,  and  education  was  compulsory  under  the  laws.  Nu- 
merous authorities  cited  by  Edersheim  establish  beyond  a  doubt 
that  a  city  or  town  where  there  was  no  school  was  not  lawfully  to 
be  inhabited  by  any  family,  and  deserved  to  be  either  destroyed  or 
excommunicated.  And  Jewish  tradition  had  it  that,  in  spite  of 
the  fabulous  number  of  schools  supposed  to  have  existed  in  Jeru- 
salem, the  city  fell  only  because  of  the  neglect  of  the  education  of 

These  schools,  sometimes  called^^<f//?//^,  evidently  from  the  Greek 
schole,  where  children  gathered  around  their  teachers,  were  des- 
tined to  impart  to  them,  first  the  knowledge  of  the  alphabet  and  of 
writing,  and  then  onwards  to  the  farthest  limit  of  instruction,  and 
were  conducted  with  extreme  care,  wisdom,  accuracy  and  a  moral 
and  religious  purpose  as  the  ultimate  object.  To  use  the  language 
of  Maimonides,  from  whom  Edersheim  quotes,  "  encircled  by  his 
pupils  as  by  a  crown  of  glory,"  the  teacher,  generally  the  Chazzan, 
or  officer  of  the  synagogue,  made  them  familiar  with  the  precious 
knowledge  of  the  law,  adapting  it  constantly  to  their  capacity  with 

240  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

unwearied  patience,  intense  earnestness,  and,  above  all,  with  the 
highest  object  of  their  training  ever  in  view. 

Roughly  classifying  the  subjects  of  study,  it  was  held,  as  Eder- 
sheim  explains,  that  up  to  ten  years  of  age  the  Sacred  Book  should 
be  exclusively  the  text-book.  From  ten  to  fifteen  they  studied 
the  Mishnah,  or  traditional  law.  After  that  age  the  student 
entered  into  those  theological  and  philosophical  discussions  which 
took  place  in  the  higher  academies  of  the  rabbis.  The  first  book 
of  the  Scripture  to  be  studied  was  the  Leviticus.  From  it  they 
passed  to  the  other  parts  of  the  Pentateuch,  and  then  to  the 
Prophets,  and  finally  to  the  Hagiographa  or  sacred  writings, 
which  completed  the  Scripture.  What  now  constitutes  the  Gemare 
or  Talmud  was  taught  in  the  academies. — ('*  The  Life  and  Times 
of  Jesus  the  Messiah,"  by  Alfred  Edersheim,  Book  ii.  chap.  9.) 

And  why  had  the  teaching  to  be  necessarily  oral  ?  The  posses- 
sion of  parts,  if  not  of  the  whole,  of  the  writings  which  form  what 
we  call  the  "  Old  Testament "  was  very  common,  and  formed  a 
cherished  treasure  in  every  household.  From  the  first  book  of 
the  Maccabees,  chapter  i.,  v.  59  and  60,  it  appears  that  during  the 
great  persecution  which  preceded  their  rising  up  in  arms  against 
the  tyranny  which  oppressed  their  country,  one  of  the  obnoxious 
edicts  of  king  Antiochus  was,  that  the  houses  should  be  searched, 
the  sacred  books  found  in  them  seized  and  destroyed,  and  that 
"  every  man  in  whose  possession  a  book  of  the  testament  of  the 
Lord  was  found"  should  be  put  to  death. 

It  might  have  been  interesting  for  the  attentive  listeners  of  Uncle 
Midas  to  hear  from  him  these  accounts,  or  others,  no  doubt  pre- 
sented in  a  better  form, — and  being  taught  that  schools,  and  school- 
laws,  and  school-boards,  and  compulsory  education,  and  academies 
and  universities,  were  things  well-known  not  only  among  the  Jews, 
but  among  the  Egyptians,  before  the  days  of  the  Exodus,  when 
Moses  was  a  student  at  Heliopolis ;  and  that  even  newspapers,  called 
Mikhtabhin,  appear  to  hav'e  been  in  existence  in  the  days  of  the 
childhood  of  our  Lord,  which  were  not  allowed  to  appear  on  the 
Sabbath  except  when  dwelling  on  public  affairs. — ("  The  Life,  etc." 
Book  ii.,  chap.  2.) 

When  Uncle  Midas  has  gone  through  with  his  critical  analysis 
of  the  "  Gospel  of  the  Infancy,"  and  returned  the  book  to  its  place 
in  his  library,  to  be  kept  there  as  a  standing  monument  of  human 
foolishness,  he  makes  his  audience  listen  to  those  passages  in  the 
Gospels  which  refer  to  the  subject  which  he  was  discussing.  And 
as  he  specially  dwelt  upon  the  second  chapter  of  St.  Luke,  begin- 
ning at  the  39th  verse,  he  had  special  delight,  as  it  seems,  in  por- 
traying, as  vividly  as  he  could,  the  trip  from  Nazareth  to  Jerusalem, 

A  Nezv  Biographer  of  our  Lord.  241 

which  ended  by  the  incident  of  the  losing  of  the  child  Jesus  and 
His  finding  in  the  temple. 

With  what  care  Uncle  Midas  describes  what  he  calls  that  "pro- 
cession "  !  The  Blessed  Virgin  riding  on  a  donkey ;  by  her,  her 
Divine  Son,  our  Lord,  marching  on  foot ;  and  close  to  them  St. 
Joseph,  also  on  foot;  surrounded  by  James,  Joseph,  Simon  and 
Jude,  who  he  says  were  the  sons  of  St.  Joseph  by  a  former  mar- 
riage. Fortunately  Uncle  Midas,  who  has  a  great  respect  for  the 
Blessed  Virgin,  to  such  an  extent  as  to  compel  him  to  ask  pardon 
for  it  in  consideration  of  his  "  great  love  of  good  women,"  did 
not  do  as  others  have  done,  rashly  and  impiously,  and  refrained 
from  stating  that  the  four  personages  above  named  were  brethren 
of  our  Lord  in  the  real,  material  sense  of  the  word. 

That  James,  Joseph,  Simon  and  Jude  were  not  the  sons  of  St. 
Joseph,  and  not  brothers,  but  cousins,  of  our  Lord,  the  sons  of 
Cleophas,  also  called  Alpheus,  and  of  Mary,  a  cousin  of  the 
Blessed  Virgin,  is  a  fact  so  well  established,  even  simply  histor- 
ically, that  Uncle  Midas  might  have  done  better  by  talking  to  his 
listeners  with  more  accuracy.  Even  Protestant  writers  of  the  most 
l)igoted  disposition,  upon  exhaustive  inquiries,  have  had  to  recog- 
nize the  true  relationship  of  the  four  personages  above  named  with 
our  Divine  Redeemer;  and  Puss,  and  Nan,  and  John,  and  the  others 
who  eagerly  received  the  words  of  Uncle  Midas  might  have  been 
much  better  taught,  and  perhaps  more  pleased  also,  if,  instead  of 
the  wrong  notions  put  by  him  in  their  heads,  they  would  have 
been  given  a  short  and  interesting  account  of  the  family  of  both 
St.  Joseph  and  the  Blessed  Virgin,  and  an  explanation  of  who 
were  the  different  persons  named  Mary  whom  the  Gospels  men- 

This  very  same  trip  to  Jerusalem,  which  the  commandments  of 
the  law  caused  the  Holy  Family,  as  well  as  all  other  faithful  relig- 
ious observers,  to  make,  might  have  been  under  a  different,  and  no 
doubt  better,  spirit,  extremely  interesting  to  the  children  who  had 
gathered  around  the  speaker.  St.  Epiphanius  and  St.  Bernard, 
cited  by  Orsini  in  his  "  Life  of  the  Blessed  Virgin,"  chapter  xv.,  in- 
forms us  that  in  those  journeys,  both  going  and  returning,  the 
men  went  in  companies,  separate  from  the  women,  and  that  St. 
Joseph  and  the  Blessed  Virgin  were  in  different  companies,  this 
having  been  the  reason  why  neither  of  them  felt  at  first  uneasy  at 
the  disappearance  of  Jesus,  and  did  not  perceive  it  until  the  even- 
ing, when  all  the  travelers  assembled  together.  Instead  of  giving 
his  listeners  a  description  of  the  flight  into  Egypt,  such  as  a 
great  painter  has  portrayed  it  on  canvas,  the  Blessed  Virgin 
riding  on  a  donkey  and  St.  Joseph  walking  by  her,  Uncle 
Midas  might  have  copied  from  Orsini,  and  given  to  his  listeners 
VOL.  XIV. — 16 

242  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

an  account  of  the  groups  or  companies  of  which  the  travelers 
formed  a  part  during  the  day.  "  Around  the  Virgin,"  he  says, 
*'  were  Mary  of  Cleophas,  sister-in-law  of  Joseph,  another  Mary, 
designated  in  the  Gospel  by  the  name  oi  altera  Maria,  Salome,  the 
wife  of  Zebedee,  who  came  from  Bethsaida,  ....  Johanna,  the 
wife  of  Chus,  and  a  number  of  Nazarenes  of  her  family  connec- 
tions and  neighborhood.  Joseph  followed  them  at  some  distance, 
conversing  gravely  with  Zebedee  the  fisherman  and  the  ancients 
of  his  tribe.  Jesus  walked  amidst  some  young  Galileans  whom 
the  Gospel,  according  to  the  genius  of  the  Hebrew  tongue,  has 
called  his  brethren,  and  who  were  his  near  relatives." 

When  the  passage  was  reached  relative  to  the  answer  which 
our  Lord  gave  to  His  mother,  "  how  is  it  that  ye  sought  Me? 
Did  you  not  know  that  I  must  be  about  the  things  that  are  My 
Father's?"  or  "  about  My  Father's  business,"  as  Uncle  Midas's 
Protestant  New  Testament  read,  one  of  the  children  asked  what 
was  meant  by  that  phrase.  Uncle  Midas  gravely  answered  by 
giving  his  listeners  a  lesson  of  religious  indifference,  if  not  real 
irreligion.  "  One  of  the  clearest  observations  of  my  life,"  he  said, 
"  is  that  people  of  good  intent  are  never  troubled  in  the  matter  of 
religion,  except  as  they  stray  off  into  that  field.  In  return  for  your 
trust  in  me,  take  a  rule  of  conduct,  good  for  every  day's  observance  : 
when  you  hear  a  man  talking  oracularly  in  definition  of  topics 
which  our  Lord  thought  best  to  leave  outside  of  His  teachings  and 
revelation,  set  it  down  that  he  is  trenching  on  the  business  of  the 
Father  and  the  prerogatives  of  the  Son.  Then  go  your  way  and 
let  him  alone." 

In  other  words,  whenever  the  successors  of  the  Apostles,  when- 
ever the  Church  which  has,  and  has  to  have,  infallible  authority  to 
teach  the  truth,  oracularly,  as  Uncle  Midas  says,  in  matters  of  reli- 
gion, proclaim  a  tenet,  or  define  a  topic,  or  fix  a  dogma,  set  it 
down  that  the  one  and  the  other  are  intruders  in  the  affairs  of  the 
Father.  Close  your  ears  to  their  teachings,  turn  your  backs  to 
them,  and  follow  your  own  judgment. 

All  missions  and  apostolic  work  are  no  more  than  intrusions. 
No  man  of  good  intent  can  be  troubled  by  these  matters. 

If  this  is  all  that  Uncle  Midas  learned  in  this  world,  after  his 
sixty-five  years  of  experience  as  a  lawyer,  a  soldier,  an  author,  a 
traveler,  a  scholar,  a  statesman,  and  a  diplomatist,  he  was  cer- 
tainly to  be  pitied. 

Protestantism  and  Art.  243 


r^  ESCRIBING  the  effects  of  the  "Reformation"  on  art  is  analo- 
■■^  gous  to  describing  the  effects  of  the  great  eruption  of  Vesu- 
vius on  Pompeii,  Herculaneum,  and  the  surrounding  country. 
When  the  bHnding  tempest  has  spent  itself  and  the  Stygian  flood 
has  congealed,  nothing  is  visible  under  the  sun  but  desolation  and 
the  blackness  of  fire-wrought  ruin.  The  gardens  and  groves,  the 
villas  and  vineyards  that  adorned  the  slopes  of  the  mountain,  and  the 
fair  Greek  cities  lower  down  are  buried  and  blotted  out.  The 
Iconoclasts  of  the  sixteenth  and  seventeenth  centuries  wrought 
similar  havoc  on  the  religious  institutions  and  edifices  and  all  they 
contained.  To  make  the  causes  of  the  great  catastrophe  clear,  it 
is  necessary  to  go  back  to  an  earlier  date. 

The  inventions  and  discoveries  of  the  fifteenth  century  were 
instrumental  in  producing  changes  that  no  prophet  predicted  nor 
philosopher  divined.  They  contributed  to  bring  about  revolutions 
and  counter-revolutions,  both  in  the  objective  and  subjective 
worlds — in  commerce,  industry,  art,  science,  and  religion.  Gun- 
powder had  been  invented  and  was  rapidly  revolutionizing  the  art 
of  war.  The  invention  of  the  mariner's  compass  and  the  astrolabe 
were  revolutionizing  the  art  of  navigation.  The  great  ocean  navi- 
gators now  sailed  out  free  and  far  into  the  unknown,  and  discov- 
ered new  worlds.  The  story  told  by  Columbus  on  his  return  to 
Spain  was  charged  with  the  magic  of  romance  as  well  as  the  magic 
of  science,  and  lifted  men  above  the  clouds.  The  volume  of  secu- 
lar revelation  continued  to  increase.  The  open  book  in  the  hand 
of  the  angel  who  had  his  right  foot  on  the  sea  and  his  left  foot  on 
the  land  was  read  and  devoured,  for  the  fullness  of  time  had  come. 
The  doubling  of  the  Cape  of  Good  Hope,  the  circumnavigation  of 
the  globe,  the  conquest  of  Mexico  and  Peru,  were  the  inevitable 
sequel  of  the  heroic  exploits  of  Columbus.  The  discovery  of 
Labrador  by  the  Cabots  and  the  St.  Lawrence  by  Jacques  Cartier, 
which  brought  England  and  France  within  the  charmed  circle  of 
maritime  exploration  and  colonial  enterprise,  fanned  the  spirit  of 
adventure  into  swift  activity  and  further  extended  the  boundaries 
of  knowledge.  Geography,  ethnography,  and  natural  history  sud- 
denly expanded  towards  their  natural  limits,  sweeping  away  many 
of  the  fables  perpetuated  or  invented  by  Herodotus,  Pliny,  Marco 
Polo,  and  other  historic  celebrities.  The  invention  of  printing 
1  See  Catholic  Quarterly  for  July,  1888,  article  "Art  and  Religion." 

244  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

with  movable  types  and  the  kindred  art  of  engraving,  or  printing 
copies  innumerable  in  black  and  white  of  drawings  of  every  kind 
— representations  of  all  objects — and  the  making  of  paper  from 
linen  rags,  which,  all  three  taken  together  in  the  printed  and  illus- 
trated page,  constitute  the  least  perishable  repository  of  ideas  and 
the  most  potent  of  instrumentalities  for  acting  on  public  opinion, 
were  also  products  of  this  same  wonder-breeding  epoch. 

The  fall  of  Constantinople  in  the  middle  of  the  fifteenth  century, 
which  was  immediately  preceded  and  followed  by  an  exodus  of 
Greek  scholars  and  artists,  was  another  factor  in  the  making  of  the 
modern  world,  for  it  gave  a  new  and  mighty  impulse  to  the  Renais- 
sance— a  movement  which  soon  evinced  a  spirit  of  hostility  to 
ethical  Christianity.  The  promulgation  of  the  Pythagorian  or 
Copernican  theory  of  the  solar  system  capped  the  climax  of  the 
scientific  movement  and  plumed  speculative  thought  with  daring 
pinion.  When  the  pillared  earth  on  which  the  sky  rested  became 
a  whirling  globe  in  the  void,  and  in  company  with  the  peerless 
evening  star  and  the  other  planets,  and  attended  by  the  moon  (un- 
justly called  inconstant),  revolving  around  the  sun,  who,  clad  in 
the  majesty  and  terror  of  fire,  sate  enthroned  in  sovereign  state  on 
his  own  immovable  centre,  big-eyed  wonder  looked  out  transfixed 
on  the  fathomless  mysteries  of  the  transformed  universe.  The 
starry  roof,  more  shadowy  and  unreal  than  a  summer  cloud,  was 
dissolved  and  the  old  cosmogony  vanished  into  space.  The  crys- 
tal sphere,  inlaid  with  patens  of  fine  gold,  was  resolved  into  inco- 
herent innumerable  units  scattered  through  immeasurable  space. 
All  these  stupendous  novelties  disturbed  profoundly  the  equilib- 
rium of  the  human  faculties,  and  in  the  resulting  reel  and  dizziness 
the  foundations  of  the  Church  and  of  the  world  itself  seemed  to 
quake  and  fail.  Imagination  ran  into  fantasy  and  fantasy  into 
magic  and  wild  superstitions ;  there  was  white  magic,  and  black 
magic,  and  a  whole  brood  of  diabolical  delusions  which  owed  their 
origin,  it  is  believed,  to  the  corrupt  esoteric  teachings  of  the  Sara- 
cen schools  in  the  Orient  and  in  Spain,  and  which,  perhaps,  might 
be  traced  back  to  Egyptian  priests  and  Chaldean  seers  in  far-off 
times.  Astrology  and  alchemy,  phantasms  of  Arabian  Sabiaiiism, 
flourished  more  than  at  any  previous  period.  Man's  life  was  inex- 
orably governed  by  the  planets  and  constellations.  The  philoso- 
pher's stone  and  the  elixir  of  life — gold  and  immortality — were 
the  desiderata  of  pretended  occult  science.  So-called  sages  and 
scholars  searched  with  feverish  haste  for  these  talismans,  and  in 
the  search  wasted  the  fortunes  of  their  disciples  and  dupes,  and 
often  their  own  lives,  for  they  were  not  all  impostors.  Other 
noxious  emanations  from  the  nether  world  darkened  the  face  of 
nature  at  this  juncture,  the  most  sinister  and  deadly  of  which  was 

Protestantism  and  Art.  24; 

witchcraft— a  superstition  which  drank  the  blood  of  the  classes 
that  called  especially  for  charity  and  protection— the  old,  the  feeble, 
and  the  poverty-stricken. 

Such  was  the  intellectual  condition  of  Europe  at  the  advent  of 
the  "  Reformation,"  and  those  were  the  auxiliary  causes  of  its  rapid 
progress.  Nothing  was  too  gross  for  the  credulity  of  the  vulgar, 
provided  it  was  a  new  thing.  The  age  had  drunk  deeply  of  "the 
Renaissance  and  of  the  new  geographical  and  cosmical  revelations. 
When  the  more  potent  chalice  of  the  new  theology  was  commended 
to  the  lips  of  the  new  generation,  men  drank  so  greedily  of  that 
chalice  that  many  became  mad — mad  with  that  form  of  insanity 
which  is  contagious  and  which  may  seize  a  whole  people  of  a  sud- 
den— Fanaticism. 

Those  movements  and  events  down  to  the  "  Reformation"  had  no 
injurious  effect  on  any  branch  of  art,  with  one  exception — minia- 
ture painting.  The  copying  of  manuscript  was,  of  course,  super- 
seded by  printing,  and  the  art  of  illumination  by  engraving.  This 
last  was  soon  recognized  as  a  legitimate  form  of  fine  art,  and  evi- 
dently destined  to  fulfil  in  a  measure  the  same  office  for  painting, 
sculpture,  and  architecture  that  the  art  of  printing  fulfils  for  letters, 
and,  apart  from  that,  to  enter  on  a  field  exclusively  its  own,  etch- 
ing from  nature — a  field  of  which  it  is  in  full  possession  at  present. 
Indeed,  art  steadily  advanced,  with  the  exception  mentioned,  till 
the  throes  of  the  Lutheran  revolt  began  to  shake  Europe.  As 
Beatrice  grew  more  radiant  and  divine  as  she  ascended  from  orb 
to  orb,  so  art  grew  more  beautiful  and  sublime  in  her  gorgeous 
progress  from  decade  to  decade,  till  the  great  eclipse  of  faith  in  the 
sixteenth  century  "  disastrous  twilight  shed  on  half  the  nations." 
In  that  ghastly  gloaming  the  spell-struck  fanatic  saw  demons  am- 
bushed in  shrine  and  image.  Things  of  beauty,  especially  if  asso- 
ciated with  religion,  instead  of  filling  him  with  lofty  joy,  made 
day  and  night  hideous  to  his  haggard  eye  and  perverted  con- 
science. His  zeal  against  idolatry  became  a  fire  and  flame  within 
him,  to  which  the  torch  in  the  outer  world  soon  responded. 

The  fall  of  Constantinople  and  the  extinction  of  the  Eastern  Em- 
pire had  extended  the  field  of  art  in  western  Europe.  The  study 
and  imitation  of  the  antique  were  no  novelties  in  Italy,  for  they 
were  followed  there  from  an  early  day  by  the  Pisani,  Squarchione, 
and  their  schools;  but  the  Greek  refugees,  under  the  auspices  of 
the  ^Medici  and  other  princes,  imparted  a  momentum  to  it  which 
dete'rmined  the  character  of  the  years  that  followed,  of  whiph  mem- 
orable years  it  became  the  dominant  influence  and  far-shining 
blazon.  The  luxuriant  results  soon  became  marvellously  appa- 
rent in  art  as  well  as  literature,  while  in  the  social  life  and  politics 
of  the  princes  and  nobles  the  smiling  promise  of  the  new  spirit 

246  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

soon  passed  into  a  sinister  frown  or  a  satyr-like  leer — true  forecasts 
of  the  lives  they  were  doomed  to  lead.  No  doubt  all  this  was  in- 
imical to  asceticism  and  the  temper  of  the  cloister,  and,  indirectly, 
to  Christian  art,  which  had  no  longer  the  field  exclusively  to  itself, 
but  it  added  immensely  to  the  repertoire  of  the  studios.  The  old 
sculptures  dug  up  from  time  to  time  furnished  models  of  perfect 
physical  form.  The  ample  roll  of  mythology  furnished  themes 
for  the  decoration  of  palaces,  municipal  buildings,  and  banqueting 
halls.  The  artists,  working  in  the  new  field,  but  still  cultivating  the 
old  and  greater  one,  acquired  an  amplitude  of  design  and  a  free- 
dom of  fancy  not  permitted  in  sacred  art.  But  as  the  pagan  tem- 
ples had  yielded  their  stately  columns  and  polished  marbles  to 
adorn  the  churches,  so  now  another  transition,  from  paganism  to 
Christianity,  but  a  wholly  innocent  and  indeed  edifying  one,  took 
place.  The  rhythmic  proportions,  rapt  repose,  and  flowing  lines 
of  the  Greek  deities  were  bestowed  on  the  saints  and  angels.  How- 
ever, this  ennoblement  of  form  was  not  permitted  to  mar  the 
ancient  Christian  ideal  or  blur  the  divine  sadness  characteristic  of 
the  Christian  types. 

Wherv  it  becomes  necessary  to  tell  once  more  what  has  been 
often  told,  the  telling  should  be  brief.  Briefly,  then,  the  years 
immediately  preceding  the  "  Reformation  "  were  the  golden  age  of 
Christian  art.  The  fresh  morning  prime — the  day  of  Giotto,  of 
the  Van  Eycks,  of  the  Pisani,  of  Memling,  of  Fra  Angelico,  of  Ver- 
rocchio,  of  Massaccio,  of  the  Bellini,  of  Perugino,  of  Martin  Schon- 
gauer,  passed  in  due  season  into  the  noontide  splendor  of  Michael 
Angelo,  Raphael,  Titian,  Leonardo,  Giorgione,  Francia,  Albert 
Durer,  Hans  Holbein,  Peter  Vischer,  and  their  hardly  less  famous 
brethren.  These  men  were  all  born  before  the  "  Reformation,"  but 
all  lived  into  it  except  Raphael,  who  died  in  1520,  the  year  Luther 
openly  defied  the  Pope.  Raphael  and  Luther  were  born  the  same 
year;  Calvin  and  Michael  Angelo  died  the  same  year.  Melanch- 
thon,  Zwingli,  Henry  the  Eighth,  Boccold,  the  Anabaptist,  Karl- 
stadt,  the  Saxon  Iconoclast,  Munzer,  the  leader  of  the  German 
peasant  insurrection,  were  all  contemporaries,  and  also  contempo- 
raries of  the  great  artists.  John  Knox  was  born  in  1505  and  John 
Calvin  in  1509,  but  historically,  if  not  strictly  chronologically,  they 
belonged  to  the  same  group  as  the  English,  German,  and  Swiss 
*'  Reformers."  To  borrow  a  phrase  from  the  stage,  they  were  all 
in  the  same  cast,  though  some  came  on  later  than  others. 

At  that  critical,  momentous  period,  when  the  earth  trembled 
under  the  tread  of  giants,  and  those  institutions  of  the  Church 
which  were  overloaded  with  wealth  and  privilege  were  assailed 
by  the  secular  powers  that  coveted  that  wealth  and  envied  the 
privileges,  art  was  still  profoundly  religious  as  well  as  supremely 

Protestantism  and  Art,  247 

grand.  It  continued  to  unfold  its  growing  splendor  in  the 
churches,  chapels,  and  oratories.  By  far  the  greater  number  of 
the  works  of  the  day— a  day  that  was  so  soon  to  end— were  de- 
signed for  altars  and  shrines,  or  for  the  banners  carried  in  religious 
processions,  like  the  Madonna  di  San  Sisto,  or  to  illustrate  dogma, 
like  the  Adoration  of  the  Trinity,  by  Albert  Durer,  or  the  Dis-' 
puta,  by  Raphael ;  or  to  illustrate  the  principal  scenes  in  Holy 
Writ,  like  the  frescoes  in  the  Sistine  Chapel,  The  subjects  of  all 
these  chefs  doeiivre,  and  of  all  the  chefs  d'ceuvre  to  be  seen  to-day 
in  the  museums,  are  taken  from  the  supernatural,  or,  to  say  the 
least,  the  great  majority  of  them.  In  the  Disputa,  for  instance, 
heaven  and  earth,  past  and  present,  the  quick  and  the  dead,  are 
embraced  in  one  apocalyptic  vision.  Saint  Thomas  Aquinas  and 
Dante,  both  of  whom  are  there,  seem  to  have  given  each  a  sepa- 
rate inspiration  to  Raphael.  In  short,  whether  we  look  to  fresco 
painting,  panel  painting,  or  sculpture,  we  see  once  more,  and 
nearly  for  the  last  time,  the  themes  that  were  handled  with  tim- 
idity in  the  catacombs,  and  nobly  developed  in  the  basilicas,  now 
invested  with  the  highest  attributes  of  beauty  and  power ;  but 
from  the  cubicula  of  St.  Calixtus  to  the  Arena  Chapel,  an4  thence 
to  the  Sistine,  and  from  the  Madonna  in  the  Catacomb  of  Saint 
Priscilla  (the  earliest  known  picture  of  the  Virgin  and  Child)  to 
the  Holbein  and  Raphael  Madonnas  in  Dresden,  first  and  last  they 
are  all  conceived  in  the  same  spirit  and  fulfil  the  same  ecclesias- 
tical and  devotional  purpose,  and  for  the  fulfilment  of  which  they 
were  expressly  designed  and  executed. 

The  greatest  monument  of  pictorial  representation  the  world  has 
yet  seen — the  vault  and  the  end  wall  of  the  Sistine  Chapel — was 
created  at  this  time.  Let  us  dwell  briefly  on  those  gigantic 
achievements  of  Michael  Angelo,  as  they  illustrate  vividly  the  tran- 
scendent excellence  of  art  on  the  eve  of  the  "  Reformation."  In  those 
immense  frescoes  there  are  three  hundred  and  forty-five  figures — 
most  of  them  colossal — patriarchs,  prophets,  kings,  sibyls,  saints, 
angels,  demons,  Lucifer  himself,  and  a  greater  than  Lucifer.  The 
series  of  compositions  begins  with  the  Creation  and  fitly  ends  with 
the  Last  Judgment.  The  Father  Almighty,  charioted  on  the  wings 
of  the  cherubims  by  the  wings  of  the  wind,  sweeping  over  the 
abyss,  making  the  heavens  and  the  earth,  dominates  the  opening 
scene,  and  the  Son  of  Man,  with  uplifted  hand,  gauntleted  with 
wrath,  the  final  and  most  fearful  catastrophe.  The  Titanic  forms 
in  those  vast  compositions  seem  to  have  no  affinity,  except  in 
shape,  to  beings  of  earthly  mold,  unless  we  go  back  to  the  ante- 
diluvian earth,  before  man  lost  his  towering  stature  or  his  brow 
the  brightness  of  the  image  in  which  he  was  made.  To  say  that 
they  excel  all  other  pictorial  works  in  that  quality  which  is  con- 

248  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

fessedly  the  highest  in  every  manifestation  of  art  and  nature, — 
sublimity, — is  merely  to  repeat  the  unanimous  verdict  of  the  civ- 
ilized world  for  four  hundred  years.  They  show  the  unexampled 
power  of  the  hand  as  well  as  of  the  intellect  and  imagination  of  the 
author.  The  principal  figures,  except  those  in  the  Inferno,  which 
are  fitly  clothed  with  hideousness  and  grizzly  horror,  are  endowed 
in  face  and  form  with  superhuman  majesty  and  solemnity,  as  well 
as  superhuman  proportions.  The  muses  in  their  flight  evidently 
passed  and  paused  there,  and  touched  the  mighty  forms  with  the 
fire  of  life ;  and  the  heaven-eyed  mystics,  who,  in  those  rapt  moods 
when  "thought  was  not,"  passed  the  flaming  bounds  of  space  and 
time,  touched  them  with  a  diviner  ray  brought  down  from  a  loftier 
sphere.  The  spirit  in  which  the  whole  is  conceived  and  executed 
reveals  a  double  inspiration — the  poetical  and  the  religious ;  but 
that  spirit  is  purely  the  supernatural  spirit  of  the  Middle  Ages. 
While  Michael  Angelo's  architectural  designs  were  inspired  directly 
or  indirectly  by  the  monuments  of  ancient  Rome,  his  paintings  and 
sculptures,  the  truest  expressions  of  his  genius,  and  the  most  orig- 
inal, give  ocular  demonstration  that  they  belong  as  wholly  and 
truly  to  the  mediaeval  cycle  as  the  Gothic  cathedrals  beyond  the 
Alps.  Notwithstanding  the  authority  to  the  contrary  of  a  learned 
but  bigoted  historian  (John  Addington  Symonds),  we  venture  to 
say  that  no  unprejudiced  eye  can  discern  in  the  works  that  cover 
the  vast  vault  of  the  Sistine,  or  the  vast  space  of  the  Last  Judg- 
ment, any  trace  of  the  Humanist  or  pagan  inspiration  of  the 
Renaissance,  though  the  author  in  his  youth  was  undoubtedly  a 
protege  of  Lorenzo  de'  Medici,  and  a  pupil  of  some  of  the  Human- 
ist scholars  patronized  by  that  prince.  It  is  not  too  much  to  say 
that  the  glorious  chapel  of  the  Vatican  enshrines  the  supreme  epic 
of  Christian  art  since  Dante,  and  that  its  place  is  by  the  side  of  the 
"  Divina  Commedia,"  of  which  it  is  a  translation  into  visible  form  ; 
but  years  before  the  work  was  finished,  that  is,  before  the  Last 
Judgment  was  painted,  the  Iconoclastic  movement,  armed  with  fire 
and  sword,  had  swept  over  Europe,  leaving  desolation  in  its  track. 
The  historians  and  critics  all  agree  that  the  "  Reformation  "  was 
hurtful  to  religious  art,  and  one  of  the  many  causes  of  its  decline, 
and  this  they  say  in  brief  and  general  terms.  However,  no  com- 
petent author  or  other  authority,  as  far  as  the  writer  knows,  admits 
that  it  was  anything  more  than  one  of  the  many  causes  of  that  de- 
cline, much  less  the  sole  one,  and,  least  of  all,  not  only  of  the  de- 
cline of  sacred  art,  but  of  all  art,  sacred  and  profane,  except  music 
and  poetry.^     This  is  what  the  writer  purposes  to  show  in  the  fol- 

^  Briefly,  then,  we  find  that  the  religious  revolution,  wherever  it  penetrated,  de- 
stroyed at  a  blow  the  great  function  of  religious  art,  whilst  everywhere  the  diffusion 
of  printing  largely  lessened  its  importance  as  a  means  of  popular  instruction.     Mean- 

Protestantism  and  Art.  240 

lowing  pages  by  drawing  the  curtain  from  one  of  the  most  wide- 
spread scenes  of  the  drama  of  the  "  Reformation,"  the  image-break- 
ing episode,  of  which  but  a  dim  and  distant  reminiscence  seems  to 
exist  even  among  the  learned.  But  some  mention  of  the  doctrinal 
propagandism  which  preceded  the  overt  acts  of  wanton  demoli- 
tion is  necessary  in  order  to  give  an  idea  of  the  deep-seated  motive 
which  prompted  those  acts,  and  the  lasting  effects  of  the  war  on 

The  cry  of  idolatry,  as  the  synonym  and  substance  of  image 
worship,  or  prayers  and  meditations  in  the  presence  of  statues  and 
pictures  representing  Christ  and  the  saints,  had  resounded  through 
Europe  in  early  ages,  and  had  sufficient  force  then  to  split  the 
empire  and  the  Church.  Like  the  simoon  it  came  from  the  hot 
sands  of  the  desert,  but  left  behind  it  no  permanent  evil  results, 
except  in  the  Byzantine  empire  and  the  Mohammedan  world.^ 
The  "  Reformers  "  now  raised  the  same  cry,  and  a  spell  of  preter- 
natural power  as  in  the  olden  time  it  proved  to  be.  Neither  the 
diffusion  of  letters,  the  discoveries  of  science,  the  increase  of  com- 
merce, nor  the  general  progress  in  civilization  had  weakened  its 
malefic  energy  in  the  least.  The  pulpits  of  Wittenberg  and  Zurich 
(Calvin  the  supreme  Iconoclast  had  not  yet  made  his  debut  as  "  re- 
former ")  thundered  against  idolatry.  All  the  maledictions  uttered 
in  the  Old  Testament  against  idol  worship  were  now  hurled  against 
the  Church.  Those  fierce  pulpiteers — apostate  priests — struck  at 
all  the  dogmas  and  traditions  which  were  the  aesthetic  motives,  and, 
we  may  add,  the  deepest  inspiration  of  Christian  art.  The  Real 
Presence  was  denied.  The  sacraments  were  reduced  to  two  or 
three.  The  invocation  of  saints  and  angels  was  foolishness.  The 
worship  of  the  Blessed  Virgin  was  idolatry.  Prayers  for  the  dead 
were  of  no  avail ;  for  as  the  tree  fell,  it  lay.  There  was  no  middle 
state.  The  saints  above  were  inaccessible  to  the  voice  of  prayer 
from  below,  and  in  any  case  powerless  to  help  saint  or  sinner. 
There  was  no  communion  of  the  living  and  the  dead.  Thus  the 
outlines  of  the  supernatural  world  were  blurred  or  blotted  out,  and 
clouds  of  negation  spread  between  earth  and  heaven.     Fasting  and 

while  the  literary  Renaissance,  at  first  by  its  revelation  of  the  master-works  of  Greek 
and  Roman  literature,  then  by  the  renewed  impulse  which  it  gave  to  physical  science 
in  all  its  branches,  created  interest  for  men's  minds,  which  were  not  only  in  some  de- 
gree opposed  to  serious  art,  but  always  in  competition  with  it. — (Professor  Palgrave, 
Oxford,  Decline  of  A?'t.) 

1  The  crusade  of  the  Emperor  Leo,  the  Isaurian,  seems  to  have  bequeathed  a  fatal 
influence  to  all  religious  art  wherever  the  Greek  church  prevails.  Ingl'er's  Hand- 
Book  of  Italian  Painting,  for  instance,  says  of  Russia  ;  "  Every  exercise  of  individual 
power  of  genius  is  interdicted  to  the  religious  artists."  The  same  thing  is  true  of  the 
painters  of  all  the  other  states  in  the  east  which  adhere  to  the  Greek  communion, 
while  sculpture  is  unknown  there. 

250  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review. 

abstinence,  and  especially  the  Lenten  fasts,  were  of  pagan  origin 
and  devoid  of  all  merit.  The  higher  life  was  scoffed  at  as  a  fanat- 
ical delusion  or  a  cloak  for  the  grossest  sensuality.  The  monastic 
vows  of  poverty,  chastity  and  humility,  and  the  solemn  cov^enants 
between  the  priest  and  the  Holy  Trinity  were  vain  formulae,  of 
which  the  recording  angel  or  the  enlightened  conscience  took  rro 
cognizance.  The  Mass  was  a  most  impious  and  damnable  incan- 
tation, the  foulest  of  idolatrous  abominations.  In  brief,  superstition 
and  idolatry  were  the  warp  and  woof  of  the  old  religion,  which  was 
no  religion  at  all,  but  the  great  apostacy  predicted  by  the  prophet, 
and  the  Pope  was  Anti-Christ,  the  Man  of  Sin,  the  Son  of  Per- 
dition. To  sum  up,  the  brightest  stars  of  the  Catholic  firmament 
were  wrested  from  their  orbits,  as  it  were,  and  quenched  as  quickly 
as  meteors. 

The  "  Reformers,"  still  growing  more  and  more  radical,  called 
trumpet-tongued  for  the  extirpation  of  the  whole  system  and  the 
"purging"  of  the  houses  of  worship.  Wherever  this  fierce  and 
virulent  polemic  gained  ground,  the  first  effects  of  it  were  to  dry 
up  the  spiritual  fountains  and  abrogate  the  practical  conditions 
essential  to  the  growth  and  nourishment  of  sacred  art.  The  second 
effect  was  to  let  loose  a  tempest  of  Iconoclastic  fury  on  the  art 
works  in  the  cathedrals,  convents,  and  other  ecclesiastical  build- 
ings in  northern  and  western  Europe.  Saint  and  angel  were 
banished  from  shrine  and  sanctuary,  even  where  shrine  and  sanc- 
tuary were  not  yet  razed  to  the  ground.  The  altar  was  not  only 
stripped,  but  wrenched  from  its  pride  of  place,  and  degraded  into 
a  common  table.  The  command  went  forth,  "  Since  pictures  and 
statues  are  idols  and  instruments  of  Satan,  let  them  be  all  de- 
stroyed." The  work  of  destruction  once  begun  raged  like  a  con- 
flagration. Glass  is  fragile.  The  painted  windows,  one  of  the 
chief  glories  of  Gothic  architecture,  were  the  first  to  fall.  Taber- 
nacles, choir  stalls,  episcopal  chairs,  organs,  missals,  and  pictures 
were  heaped  into  bonfires ;  statues  of  saints  and  angels,  prophets 
and  apostles,  and  the  recumbent  effigies  of  knights  and  nobles  and 
their  dames,  were  hammered  in  pieces  and  burned  into  lime.  He- 
roic monumental  art,  of  which  there  was  a  great  deal  in  the 
crypts  and  the  parts  of  the  upper  churches  appropriated  to  tombs, 
fared  no  better  than  religious  art.  In  many  places  nothing  escaped, 
in  others  just  enough  of  fragments  and  mutilated  figures  to  indi- 
cate the  magnitude  of  the  disaster.  The  artistic  product  of  sev- 
eral centuries,  garnered  in  the  sacred  houses,  the  gifts  and  be- 
quests and  sepulchral  monuments  of  pious  and  heroic  generations, 
from  whose  loins  the  destroyers  themselves  were  sprung,  were  all 
swept  away  by  the  torrent  of  puritanical  fanaticism.  Apart  from 
the  deluge  of  blood  that  inundated  Europe,  and  the  manifold  suf- 

Protestantism  and  Art,  2U 

ferings  of  the  inhabitants  caused  by  the  more  than  hundred  years 
of  fighting  between  Catholics  and  Protestants  that  followed  the 
*'  Reformation,"  there  is  no  incident  in  modern  history  more  to  be 
regretted  than  this,  because  it  robbed  posterity  of  an  inheritance 
invaluable  in  itself,  and  which  was  also  a  powerful  aid  to  letters 
and  chivalry  in  the  extension  of  liberal  culture.  The  loss  was 
irremediable,  because  the  spirit  which  had  created  mediaeval  art 
had  fled  the  earth,  though,  happily,  it  sent  down  the  new  music 
in  the  person  of  Palestrina  as  a  paraclete  to  a  forsaken  world/ 

The  severity  of  this  indictment  calls  for  a  specific  account  of  the 
wreck  and  ruin  perpetrated  by  the  Iconoclasts,  to  show  that  we 
have  attempted  no  exaggeration;  and  if  the  sombre  outlines 
sketched  above  shall  be  filled  in  with  more  sombre  strokes  and 
darker  colors,  it  is  because  the  brush  is  wielded  by  history  itself. 
The  testimony  bearing  on  the  case  is  voluminous ;  but  only  Pro- 
testant authorities  of  recognized  rank  shall  be  quoted,  and  but  a 
{^\M,  because  the  facts  have  never  been  disputed.  This  polemic, 
if  polemic  it  be,  is  confined  to  the  action  and  influence,  immediate 
and  remote,  of  the  "  Reformation  "  on  the  arts  of  design.  Music 
and  poetry  are  not  within  its  scope,  much  less  the  graver  questions 
of  politics  and  social  science,  though  one  or  other  may  incidentally 
intrude  for  a  moment.  The  '*  Reformation  "  was  not  only  a  revolu- 
tion, but  the  fruitful  mother  of  revolutions  ;  and  the  end  is  not  yet. 
Many  a  laureate  has  sung  her  stormy,  blood-red  glories  in  burn- 
ing phrase,  and  many  an  eloquent  expositor  identified  her  among 
crowding  causes  as  the  gracious  mistress  of  modern  civilization, 
and  apostrophized  her  as  the  supreme  benefactress  of  the  human 
race,  and  her  iron-tongued  apostle  as  the  grandest  incarnation  of 
heroism.  The  literature  containing  those  panegyrics  in  prose  and 
verse  fills  libraries,  and  he  who  runs  may  read.  Those  multitu- 
dinous, many-voiced  laudations  are  not  challenged  here  because  the 
purpose  is  to  keep  strictly  within  self-prescribed  limits,  and  as  far 
away  as  possible  from  the  arena  of  dogmatic  controversy.  Nev^er- 
theless,  the  question  this  article  is  attempting  to  elucidate,  which 
is  but  a  branch  of  a  greater  subject— a  subject  which  without 
exaggeration  may  be  said  to  reach  from  earth  to  heaven  and  from 
time  to  eternity — is  perhaps  fraught  with  meaning  and  teaching  of 

'  "  The  peace  of  Westphalia,  concluded  in  1648,  is  important,  however,  not  as  marked 
in  the  introduction  of  new  principles,  but  as  winding  up  the  struggle  which  had  con- 
vulsed Germany  since  the  revolt  of  Luther,  sealing  its  results  and  closing  definitely 
the  period  of  the  Reformation." — Brice,  Holy  Roman  Empire.  Chapter  19. 

That  period  closed  in  England  with  the  battle  of  Worcester,  fought  in  165 1,  and  in 
France  with  the  accession  of  Henri  Quatre,  although  the  Huguenots  were  in  rebellion 
several  times  subsequently.  The  wars  of  the  "  Reformation  "  began  in  1524,  with  the 
insurrection  of  the  German  peasants  and  the  Anabaptist  outbreak.  They  lasted  for  a 
century  and  a  quarter. 

252  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Revietv. 

vital  import.  The  new  age  looking  before  and  after  and  ponder- 
ing the  everlasting  problem  of  man's  destiny  is  coming,  if  we  mis- 
take not,  to  the  belief  that  beauty  and  sublimity  in  art,  and  beauty 
and  sublimity  in  human  character,  are  of  kindred  origin,  and  that 
the  religion  which  produces  the  best,  and  the  most  of  the  best,  both 
in  art  and  life,  has  credentials  which  the  Sadducee,  and  even  the 
atheist,  must  recognize.  The  true,  the  beautiful,  and  the  good,  the 
virtues  and  the  graces,  are  all  fruit  from  the  same  tree — the  tree  of 
life,  which  bears,  we  are  told,  twelve  kinds  of  fruit,  and  the  leaves 
of  which  are  for  the  healing  of  the  nations. 

At  the  "  Reformation  "  all  Europe  abounded  in  magnificent  cathe- 
drals, abbeys,  priories,  and  churches.  They  were  immense  piles, 
the  growth  or  aggregation  of  centuries,  and  were  thronged  with 
shrines  and  altars,  very  many  of  which  were  dowered  with  all  the 
treasures  that  wealth  and  genius,  stimulated  by  piety  or  contri- 
tion, could  bestow.  But  no  religious  edifice,  however  small  or 
remote,  was  destitute  of  pictures,  banners,  vestments,  chalices, 
candlesticks,  illuminated  missals,  and  other  requisites  of  the  altar. 
These,  it  may  be  presumed,  were  of  varying  artistic  quality,  and 
some  of  them  doubtless  of  no  artistic  quality  at  all ;  but  however 
rude  some  of  them  might  be,  they  were  all  hallowed  by  the  asso- 
ciation consequent  on  long  usage.  They  served  to  instruct  and 
edify  the  laity  generation  after  generation.  In  short,  the  art  treas- 
ures of  the  Church  when  the  "  Reformation  "  broke  out  were  num- 
berless, and  unfortunately  her  other  possessions  and  \.\\q  personnel 
of  her  establishments  were  on  a  corresponding  scale. 

England,  which  is  nearest  to  us  morally,  intellectually,  and  other- 
wise, first  claims  our  notice.  There,  according  to  the  historian,  the 
"  Reformation  "  was  carried  out  more  gradually  and  more  mildly, 
less  thoroughly,  in  fact,  than  in  any  other  country.  "  Of  all  Euro- 
pean churches,"  says  Hume,  **  which  shook  off  the  yoke  of  the  • 
Papal  authority,  no  one  proceeded  with  so  much  reason  and 
moderation  as  the  Church  of  England."  Notwithstanding  this,  we 
look  in  vain  for  reason  or  moderation  in  the  treatment  bestowed 
by  the  English  Iconoclasts  on  the  art  possessions  of  the  Church. 
On  the  contrary,  we  see  nothing  in  their  conduct  but  unreason, 
violence,  and  destructiveness.  To  begin  with,  Henry  the  Eighth 
(according  to  the  historian  already  mentioned),  "at  different  times 
suppressed  six  hundred  and  forty-five  monasteries,  ninety  colleges, 
two  thousand  three  hundred  and  seventy-four  churches  and  free 
chapels,  and  one  hundred  and  ten  hospitals."  The  suppression  of 
all  these  houses  necessarily  involved  the  destruction  or  dispersion 
of  their  artistic  collections.  This  of  itself  would  account  for  the 
decline  of  the  artistic  faculty  and  the  scarcity  of  mediaeval  art 
work  in  that  country,  but  worse  followed.     Throughout  England, 

Protestantism  and  Art,  2?^ 

says  Froude,  ''by  the  year  1539  there  was  nothing  left  to  tell  of 
the  presence  of  the  saints  but  the  names  that  clung  to  the  churches 
they  had  built,  or  the  shadowy  memories  which  hung  about  their 
desecrated  tombs Still  the  torrent  rolled  onward,  mon- 
asteries and  images  were  gone,  and  fancy  relics  in  endless  number. 
There   remained  the  peculiar  treasures  of  the  great   abbeys  and 

cathedrals The  bodies  of  the  saints  had  been  gathered 

into  costly  shrines  which  a  beautiful  piety  had  decorated  with 
choicest  offerings."  Needless  to  add,  the  shrines  were  plundered 
and  demolished.  Not  one  was  left  in  existence.  It  is  true,  St. 
Edward  the  Confessor's  is  still  to  be  seen  in  Westminster  Abbey; 
but  it  is  not  the  original  structure,  but  a  restoration  from  the  old 
building  materials  some  considerable  time  after  the  walls  were 
pulled  down.^ 

With  the  advent  of  the  young  Edward,  and  the  rule  of  Protector 
Somerset,  a  new  and  hungrier  brood  of  zealots  appeared  on  the 
stage,  ravening  for  the  last  remnants  of  the  possessions  of  the 
Church.  There  was  little  left — the  fragments  of  what  the  first 
comers  were  unable  to  devour — but  yet  enough  to  whet  the  appe- 
tite for  spoils,  and  inflame  the  mania  of  image  breaking.  We 
quote  again  from  Froude :  "  Injunctions  were  issued  for  the  general 
purification  of  the  churches.  From  wall  and  window,  every  pic- 
ture, every  image  commemorative  of  saint,  or  prophet,  or  apostle 
was  to  be  extirpated  and  put  away  so  that  there  should  remain  no 
memory  of  the  same.  Painted  glass  survives  to  show  that  the 
order  was  imperfectly  obeyed ;  but  in  general,  spoliation  became 
the  law  of  the  land — the  statues  crashed  from  the  niches ;  rood  and 
rood-loft  were  laid  low,  and  the  sunlight  stared  on  the  whitened 
aisles.  ..... 

"  The  cathedrals  and  the  churches  of  London  became  the  chosen 
scenes  of  riot  and  profanity.  St  Paul's  was  the  stock  exchange 
of  the  day,  where  the  merchants  of  the  city  met  for  business,  and 
the  lounge  where  young  gallants  gathered,  fought,  and  killed  each 
other.  They  rode  their  horses  through  the  aisles  and  stabled 
them  among  the  monuments 

"As  to  the  mass  of  the  people,  hospitals  were  gone,  schools  broken 
up,  almshouses  swept  away ;  every  institution  which  Catholic  piety 
had  bequeathed  for  the  support  of  the  poor  was  either  abolished  or 
suspended  ;  and  the  poor  themselves,  smarting  with  rage  and  suffer- 

1  The  account  of  the  pillage  and  demolition  of  the  shrine  of  St.  Thomas  in  Canter^ 
bury  Cathedral— the  richest  shrine  in  the  world— is  a  very  curious  page  of '«  Reforma- 
tion "  history.  The  saint,  who  had  been  dead  for  centuries,  was  cited  to  appear  in  court 
m  London  and  be  tried  for  treason.  Not  obeying  the  summons,  he  was  condemned  in 
his  absence  as  a  traitor,  upon  which  the  king  "  ordered  his  name  to  be  struck  out  of 
the  calendar,  the  office  of  his  festival  to  be  expunged  from  all  breviaries,  his  bones 
to  be  burned  and  the  ashes  to  be  thrown  in  the  air;" 

254  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

ing  and  seeing  piety,  honesty,  duty,  trampled  under  foot  by  their 

superiors,  were  sinking  into  savages Missals  were  chopped 

in  pieces  with  hatchets,  college  libraries  plundered  and  burned. 
The  ^divinity  schools  were  planted  with  cabbages  and  the  Oxford 
laundresses  dried  clothes  in  the  schools  of  arts." — (Froude's  "  His- 
tory of  England,"  vol.  v.  chapter  j']}) 

Knowing  that  the  England  of  to-day  is  not  an  artistic  country,  the 
Philistine  and  the  cynic  may  be  skeptical  as  to  the  value  and 
number  of  the  works  destroyed,  and  also,  perhaps,  as  to  the  excel- 
lence of  all  art  of  the  mediaeval  period,  or  even  disposed  to  sit  in 
the  seat  of  the  scorner,  like  Carlyle — true  in  this  one  thing  to  the 
teaching  of  John  Knox — and  sneer  at  the  fine  arts  one  and  all, 
and  of  all  climes  and  times.  But  the  Gothic  cathedrals,  steeped 
in  pensive  beauty,  and  breathing,  though  faintly  now,  the  odors 
of  ancient  sanctity,  still  stand  to  shame  the  scorner  and  confound 
the  ignorant.  These  majestic  fabrics  testify  in  no  doubtful  way 
to  the  unsurpassed  splendor  of  the  artistic  genius  of  the  English 
as  well  as  their  profound  piety,  before  the  "  Reformation"  ;  but  on 
this  head  we  are  not  left  to  mere  deduction,  as  witness  the  follow- 
ing from  a  late  work  by  a  learned  divine  of  the  English  church  •} 

*'  Now  up  and  down  this  land  of  England  there  are,  say,  five 
thousand  churches  that  at  this  moment  stand  upon  the  same 
foundations  that  they  stood  upon  five  hundred  years  ago ;  some 
few  of  them  standing  in  the  main  as  they  were  left  eight  centuries 
ago.  If  for  five  thousand  any  one  should  suggest,  not  five  thous- 
and, but  ten  thousand,  I  should  find  no  fault  with  the  correction. 

"  If  we  go  back  in  imagination  to  the  condition  of  these 
churches  as  they  were  left  when  the  Reformation  began,  it  may 
safely  be  affirmed  that  there  was  not  at  that  time,  there  never  had 
been,  and  there  is  never  likely  to  be  again,  anything  in  the  world 
that  could  at  all  compare  with  our  English  churches.  There 
never  has  been  an  area  of  anything  like  equal  extent  so  im- 
measurably rich   in  works  of  art  such   as  were  then  to  be  found 

1  We  find  the  following  in  Lubke's  History  of  Sculpture :  "  In  England,  M'here  his- 
torical and  political  feeling  are  so  highly  developed,  we  should  expect  above  all  a 
monumental  art.  But  just  as  little  as  the  English  have  taste  or  talent  for  higher  his- 
torical painting,  have  they  been  able  to  develop  an  important  plastic  art.  There  is 
no  lack  of  monuments  of  their  great  men ;  but  they  are  throughout  so  unsuccessful,  so 
devoid  of  style,  yet  at  the  same  time  so  completely  without  any  vigorous  conception 
of  nature,  that  we  are  inclined  to  doubt  if  they  possess  any  higher  plastic  talent."  But 
this  is  mild  in  comparison  with  the  utterances  of  Leighton  (Sir  Frederick),  Alma 
Tadema,  and  other  shining  lights  of  the  artistic  world  at  the  convention  of  "  Arts  and 
Crafts  "  held  in  London  last  November.  The  speakers,  all  artists  of  more  or  less  dis- 
tinction, asserted  and  deplored  the  insensibility — the  deadness — of  the  English  people 
as  a  whole  to  every  form  of  art,  and  their  incapacity  to  discriminate  between  good 
and  bad  art. 

Protestantism  and  Art.  2S? 

within  the  four  seas.  The  prodigious  and  incalculable  wealth 
stored  up  in  the  churches  of  this  country  in  the  shape  of  sculp- 
ture, glass,  needlework,  sepulchral  monuments  in  marble,  alabaster, 
and  metal — the  jewelled  shrines,  the  precious  MSS. — their  bind- 
ings, the  frescoes  and  carved  work,  the  vestments  and  exquisite 
vessels  in  silver  and  gold,  and  all  the  quaint  and  dainty  and 
splendid  productions  of  an  exuberant  artistic  appetite,  and  an 
artistic  passion  for  display,  which  were  to  be  found  not  only  in  the 
great  religious  houses,  but  dispersed  more  or  less  in  every  parish 
church  in  England,  constituted  such  an  enormous  aggregate  of 
precious  forms  of  beauty  as  fairly  baffles  the  imagination  when  we 
attempt  to  conceive  it.  There  are  lists  of  the  church  goods,  i.e.,  of 
the  contents  of  churches,  by  the  thousands,  not  only  in  the  six- 
teenth century,  but  in  the  fourteenth  ;  there  they  are  for  any  one  to 
read ;  and,  considering  the  smallness  of  the  area  and  the  poverty 
of  the  people,  I  say  again  that  the  history  of  the  world  has  nothing 
to  show  which  can  for  one  moment  be  compared  with  our  English 
churches  as  they  were  to  be  found  when  the  spoilers  were  let  loose 
upon  them.  Well !  We  all  know  that  a  clean  sweep  was  made  of 
the  contents  of  these  churches.  The  locusts  devoured  all.  But 
the  fabrics  remained — the  fabrics  have  remained  down  to  our  time 
— they  are,  as  it  were,  the  glorious  framework  of  the  religious  life 
of  the  past."^ 

It  remains  to  be  added  that  further  demolition  of  fane  and 
sacred  symbol  marked  the  triumphant  progress  of  the  Calvinists 
during  the  great  rebellion.  The  sword  of  the  Puritan  was  edged 
with  as  keen  a  fanaticism  as  the  scymitar  of  the  Mussulman.  The 
Long  Parliament,  when  it  relaxed  from  the  more  serious  business 
of  massacreing  the  Irish  and  murdering  witches,  seems  to  have 
given  the  last  touch  to  the  work  of  the  Iconoclasts.^  Assuming 
regal  power,  it  issued  orders  for  the  demolishing  of  all  images, 
altars  and  crucifixes,  which  act  would  imply  that  some  relics  of 
the  old  religion  still  survived.  They  had  been  hidden,  perhaps, 
or  escaped  because  they  were  in  out-of-the-way  places.  "  The 
zealous  Sir  Robert  Harley,"  says  Hume  (to  whom  the  execution 
of  these  orders  was  committed),  "  removed  all  crosses  even  out  of 
street  and  market,  and  from  his  abhorrence  of  that  superstitious 
figure,  would  not  anywhere  allow  one  piece  of  wood  or  stone  to 
lie  over  another  at  right  angles."     The   Root  and   Branch  men 

1  "  The  Coming  of  the  Friars,  and  other  historic  essays,"  by  the  Rev.  Augustus 
Jessop,  D.D.,  1889. 

2  The  era  of  the  Long  Parliament  was  that,  perhaps,  which  witnessed  the  greatest 
number  of  executions  for  witchcraft.  Three  thousand  persons  are  said  to  have  penshed 
during  the  continuance  of  the  sittings  of  that  body  by  legal  execution,  independently 
of  summary  deaths  at  the  hands  of  the  mo\i.— Chambers's  Encydopcedia. 

256  Americmi  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

were  now  riding  the  whirlwind  and  guiding  the  storm.  Canter- 
bury and  other  cathedrals  were  further  purged  by  acts  of  Parlia- 
ment. Litchfield  had  undergone  a  siege  and  bombardment ;  Lin- 
coln escaped,  though  the  bishop's  palace  was  burned  down.  West- 
minster, which  had  suffered  least  of  any,  because  the  two  cities, 
London  and  Westminster,  had  always  adhered  to  the  Parliamentary 
cause,  was  only  turned  into  a  barrack  where  the  soldiers  contented 
themselves  by  breaking  up  the  organ,  dining  regularly  on  the 
communion  table  and,  dressed  in  surplices,  playing  hounds  and 
hare  in  the  aisles. 

In  passing  from  England  to  the  Continent,  we  find  the  "  Reforma- 
tion "  growing  more  radical  in  doctrine  and  more  destructive  in 
deed.  The  destroyers  were  now  infuriated  mobs.  Luther  him- 
self was,  perhaps,  the  most  conservative,  although  the  most  vitu- 
perative of  all  the  "  Reformers,"  and  no  Iconoclast.  He  looked  on 
the  sacred  figures  in  the  churches  with  an  indifferent,  not  a  hostile, 
eye,  and  he  was  devoted  to  music  and  hymnody — a  quality  in 
him  which  has  borne  fruit  in  all  the  Lutheran  countries — but  the 
movement  which  he  led  was  instinct  with  Iconoclasticism  from  the 
beginning,  and  in  that  direction  quickly  passed  beyond  his  control. 
During  his  seclusion  in  Wartburg,  one  of  his  disciples,  Karlstadt, 
inflamed  the  common  people  in  Saxony  by  his  denunciation  of 
idolatry.  The  usual  consequences  followed.  Frenzied  crowds 
broke  into  the  churches  and  destroyed  the  works  of  art.  Luther, 
on  learning  this,  hastened  from  his  retreat,  where  he  had  been 
lying  perdti,  and,  by  the  exercise  of  his  authority  and  the  eloquence 
of  his  rebukes,  put  a  stop  to  Karlstadt's  crusade  and  suppressed, 
for  a  time,  the  fanaticism  of  his  followers.  The  Anabaptist, 
Munzer,  took  up  the  torch  which  Karlstadt  had  let  fall,  and  set 
several  of  the  German  states,  including  all  upper  Germany,  aflame 
with  his  wild  doctrines  and  rabid  exhortations.  The  peasant  in- 
surrection, which  he  instituted  and  led,  was  the  blackest  episode 
in  the  history  of  the  Protestant  movement  of  that  country ;  and 
church  wrecking  and  idol  smashing  were  the  least  of  the  outrages 
perpetrated  by  the  fanatics.^  When  the  insurrection  was  suppressed 
and  Munzer  beheaded,  many  of  his  followers  took  refuge  in  the  Low 
Countries  and  Westphalia,  where  they  continued  to  propagate  their 
political  and  religious  notions.  Two  of  their  prophets,  one  from 
Haarlem  and  one  from  Leyden,  settled  in  the  imperial  city  of  Miin- 
ster,  where  these  zealots  made  many  converts.  The  sect  attempted 
more  than  once  to  get  possession  of  the  place ;  but  at  last,  calling 
in  secretly  their  brethren   from   Holland,  they  arose  at  night  in 

1  No  such  insurrection,  so  widespread,  so  sanguinary,  and  so  ruthless  in  its  ven- 
geance had  ever  before  disquieted  Germany  as  that  which  marked  the  close  of  the 
year  1524. — Encyclopcedia  Britannica. 

Protestantism  and  Art.  2^7 

great  tumult,  seized  the  public  buildings,  created  a  panic  among 
the  people,  who  fled  in  terror  before  the  frantic  multitude  of 
strangers  that  howled  as  they  charged  through  the  streets,  and 
who  took  the  sleeping  citizens  as  much  by  surprise  as  the  Greeks 
did  the  sleeping  Trojans.  The  inevitable  result  followed.  The 
contents  of  all  the  churches  in  Miinster  and  the  surrounding 
country  were  speedily  reduced  to  ashes,  and  after  a  while  the 
churches  themselves  devoted  to  destruction,  because  Boccold,  the 
prophet  and  leader,  phophesied  that  whatever  was  highest  on 
earth  should  be  brought  low,  and  the  churches  were  the  loftiest 
buildings  of  the  city !     Somehow  they  escaped,  notwithstanding. 

In  the  Netherlands,  or  Holland,  as  we  say  now,  where  not  a 
few  of  the  followers  of  Munzer  took  refuge,  the  most  radical  Cal- 
vinistic  doctrines  prevailed,  and  consequently  the  frenzy  of  image- 
breaking  fiercely  raged.  Between  the  "  Reformation  "  and  the  wars 
that  grew  out  of  the  "  Reformation"  in  that  country,  all  pre-"  Refor- 
mation "  art  was  well-nigh  swept  away.  There  was  an  endless  store 
of  it,  for  the  Dutch  were  a  gifted  people  in  the  ages  of  faith.  But 
almost  all  perished.  "  We  shall  never,"  says  a  learned  contem- 
porary writer,  "  indeed,  possess  more  than  scraps  and  fragments  of 
information  about  the  earliest  Dutch  painters,  those  of  the  fifteenth 
and  early  sixteenth  centuries,  for  their  works  and  their  very  names 
perished  in  the  frightful  and  disastrous  confusion  of  the  Reforma- 
tion, the  religious  wars  and  the  struggle  with  Spain." ^  It  is 
impossible,  the  writer  goes  on  to  say,  to  do  more  than  guess  what 
the  world  lost  by  the  Iconoclastic  movement  in  Holland  in  the 
sixteenth  century.  A  common  oblivion  seems  to  have  swallowed 
up  the  names  of  the  artists  and  their  productions  as  well  as  the 
names  of  the  incendiaries  who  made  a  tabula  rasa  of  the  country 
as  far  as  the  Church  was  concerned.  To  this  a  single  observation 
may  be  added  :  The  sculptors  and  their  works  shared  the  fate  of  the 
painters  and  their  works.  Lubke,  in  his  "  History  of  Sculpture," 
fails  to  mention  a  single  marble  or  bronze,  a  carved  or  molten 
image,  in  all  Holland,,  or  the  name  of  a  Dutch  sculptor  of  the 
fifteenth  or  sixteenth  century. 

What  happened  in  that  part  €>f  the  Netherlands  we  now  call 
Belgium  is  described  by  Motley  in  one  of  his  most  eloquent 
passages.^  We  extract  so^me  sentences,  but  the  whole  chapter 
should  be  read  : 

"  The  Netherlands  possessed  an  extiaordinary  number  of  churches  and  monasteries. 
Their  exquisite  architecture  and  elaborate  decoration  had  been  the  earliest  indication 
of  intellectual  culture  displayed  in  the  country 

1   Les  chefs  d'ceuvre  du  Miiste  Royal  d' Amsterdam,  par  A.  Bredius,  Traduction 
Frangaise,  par  Emile  Michel. 

•''  Rise  of  the  Dutch  Republic,  vol.  i.,  chap.  7.     Motley,  though  he  depicts  in  vivid 
colors  the  desti-uction,  does  his  best  to  excuse  the  authors  of  it. 
VOL.  XIV. — 17 

258  American  Catholic  Quarterly  Review, 

"  All  that  science  could  invent,  all  that  art  could  embody,  all  that  mechanical  inge- 
nuity could  dare,  all  that  wealth  could  lavish— all  gathered  round  these  magnificent 

"  .  .  .  .  Many  were  filled  with  paintings  from  a  school  which  had  precedence  in 
time  and  merit  over  its  sister  nurseries  of  art  in  Germany.  All  were  peopled  with 
statues.     All  were  filled  with  profusely  adorned  chapels 

" .  .  .  .  And  now,  for  the  space  of  only  six  or  seven  days  and  nights,  there  raged  a 
storm  by  which  all  these  treasures  were  destroyed.  Nearly  every  one  of  these  temples 
was  rifled  of  its  contents.     Art  must  forever  weep  over  this  bereavement 

«  The  mob  rose  in  the  night  in  Antwerp  and  began  by  wrecking  the  great  cathedral 
church  of  Our  Lady,  and  before  morning  they  had  sacked  thirty  churches  within  the 

"A  troop  of  harlots,  snatching  waxen  tapers  from  the  altars,  stood  around  the 
destroyers  and  lighted  them  at  their  work 

"They  destroyed  seventy  chapels,  forced  open  all  the  chests  of  treasure,  covered